Fresh Fennel (Finocchio), Celery and Apple Salad

I found out this weekend that fennel is “finocchio” in Italian. I mostly like that because it sounds like Pinocchio although the Italian expert among the Yardbirds says that Pinocchio means “pine”. Wikipedia agrees. My finocchio salad had good reviews from all the Yardbirds on Thursday night. It was a crisp contrast to the rich Sausage and Lentil Soup. I like the salad because it far from predictable and highlights an under-utilized vegetable (finocchio that is). Fennel also is great friends with its other crunchy and green fruits and vegetables – the granny smith apple and celery. In the spirit of Pinocchio, perhaps one day I’ll be granted enough time to write a children’s book on them  (finocchio that is).

PS: Isn’t this salad pretty in my new Heath Ceramics Bowl?

Fresh Fennel, Celery and Apple Salad

  • 1 head celery, thinly chopped against the grain
  • 2 small heads of fennel, thinly sliced
  • 1 granny smith apple, jullianned
  • 1 handful parsley, roughly chopped

Lemon Vinaigrette

  • 1 and a half lemon juiced
  • a coating of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Whisk together the dressing in the bottom of a large bowl. You’ll want th dressing to be tart and a bit salty to contract with the sweet and crisp (crisp is a nice way of saying that celery can be bland) vegetables. Chop the veggies by hand or use a mandolin – I was too lazy to get mine out of the cabinet. Add the celery, fennel, apple and parsley on top of the vinaigrette. Toss to coat. Taste for seasoning.

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