dimanche 18 mars 2007

Fennel and Orange Salad

Fennel, with its distinct anise flavour, has become one of my favourite vegetables. These versatile Mediterranean white bulbs originated in Italy and are now also cultivated in Provence and Spain.

Fennel bulbs can be eaten raw in a salad, or cooked - braised, au gratin, puréed, in lasagne – just to name a few ways of preparing this vegetable. Fennel is a superb complement to fish and is a key ingredient in the Provençal fish soup, Bouillabaisse.

Fennel and Orange Salad is a refreshing Sicilian specialty. It is traditionally served at the end of a meal.

Fennel and Orange Salad
Serves 4

2 large fennel bulbs
2 sweet oranges
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
60 mL (4 Tbsp) extra-virgin olive oil
30 mL (2 Tbsp) fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Wash the fennel bulbs and remove any brown or stringy outer leaves. Thinly slice the bulbs and stems. Place in a shallow serving bowl.
Peel the oranges with a sharp knife, cutting away the white pith; slice thinly. Cut each slice into thirds. Arrange over fennel, adding any juice from the oranges.
Mix the oil and lemon juice together. Season with salt and pepper. Pour dressing over the salad and mix well. Garnish with spring onions.

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