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In recent years I’ve started cooking with Fennel. I was a bit leery at first but ended up loving the fresh crunch and slightly anise tasting veggie in a variety of recipes. This salad recipe is fabulous for an outside dinner on a warm summer evening. In fact, I occasionally make it in the winter when my body is craving that hot orange ball in the sky and sand between my toes! It’s a refreshing, citrusy oasis!!
Citrus & Fennel Salad
2 Large Oranges, peeled and ends trimmed
2 Grapefruits, peeled and ends trimmed
1 Large, or 2 small fennel bulbs, thinly sliced
1/2 Cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 Cup fresh basil leaves
S & P
1/3 Cup chopped walnuts
Place a sieve over a medium bowl. Hold the orange over the bowl and using a paring knife segment the orange by cutting along the membrane on both sides to free the segment. Let the orange piece fall into the sieve while collecting the juice in the bowl. When done segmenting, squeeze the remaining orange membranes to extract as much juice as possible. Repeat same process with the grapefruit. Reserve the juice. Place the fruit segments in a larger bowl with the sliced fennel.
In a blender or small food processor, blend the oil, basil and 3 tbsp of the reserved fruit juice until smooth. Season with S & P to taste. Pour over the fruit/fennel mixture. Add the chopped walnuts and toss.
Enjoy and smile!
~ Courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis