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Monday, June 25, 2012

Spring Salad in Summer

What with all the rain today, it finally cooled down and I was actually inspired to make something low-impact and fresh with some typically spring-y flavors.

Spring Fennel Salad
                   serves 2

1 fennel bulb
1/4 onion
1 TBS olive oil
1 TBS balsamic vinegar
salt + pepper
1 c. cooked brown rice
8 chopped black olives
2 large handfuls of spinach
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
dried dill

-Thinly slice fennel bulb and onion and toss in a bowl with olive oil, salt, pepper, and balsamic vinegar. Let marinate for at least one hour.
-In the meantime, cook rice unless you already have some made.
-Divide into two bowls: spinach, topped with warm rice, olives, sunflower seeds, and (hopefully by now) slightly wilted fennel/onion mix.
-Dust with dill and extra black pepper.

Yah so this is super simple but really delicious and pretty versatile. Switch up the grains if you want. It would also taste delicious with chopped zucchini, avocado, or fresh peas, none of which I had in the house but wish I had. I happen to like fennel a lot but some people don't. It's kind of sweet, which is countered well in the salad with the olives. You could also roast the fennel to mellow the flavor out, but I like the crunch.
The end.


  1. oooh beautiful salad! I am so glad that it finally cooled down and the humidity is gone. I had to walk around Coney Island yesterday at the hottest part of the day carrying tons of crap. it was so miserable. On the plus side, I got a vitamin d boost and a tan ;) Anyway, great salad!

  2. That is a nice salad. Very low-impact.

  3. Ah fennel — I've really tried to like (or at least not hate) fennel but so far fennel and I aren't friends. Raw fennel, that it. I was really surprised to discover that roasted fennel tastes really nice. (I don't like licorice, either.) Aside from the fennel, your salad looks nice.

  4. i love raw fennel too! so crunchy and fabulous! your salad looks incredible! you're right -- very springy! love it!

  5. We had some rain today too and much lower temperatures. Can't say I was disappointed :)

    Nice looking salad. I loooove fennel. Raw, roasted, or in green juice. Love it. I bet it was great with the olives and rice. Yum.

  6. Has it cooled down? That's nice. We're currently about to break a state record with six days in a row over 100 degrees. I have never run my central AC so much in my life - can't wait to see the electricity bill!

    Anyway, I like your salad. I wish I could get in to liking fennel.

  7. VAVA, yuck! At least you weren't there hot, carrying tons of crap, and at the mermaid parade! Tooo many people! Although you probably would have gotten some great shots. The tan sounds nice! I am thinking of getting up to my roof one of these days and getting a tiny bit of color on this pale skin of mine.

    Shen, haha I'm not sure what I mean by "low-impact" do you get what I mean, though? or are you making fun of me?? effort. maybe that's the word I should have used. Oh well.

    Andrea, ha! I was totally thinking of you when I said "some people." Cool that you tried it roasted, even though yr not of fan of raw! I wonder what would be a good sub - cabbage maybe?

    GFHT, thank you! I'm only a month or so late....

    Nikki, oh, no, I love the rainy but not too rainy and not too cold weather! I bet you get lots of that by you :) I remember being very intrigued by the fennel in yr juice. I ought to try that too.

    Ingrid, ouch. That's rough. Here I was thinking Colorado was all snowy ski slopes and chilly all the time. I gotta get out more.

  8. I love fennel, although I have so far tended to roast it along with some tomatoes and veggie sausages in the winter. I love the aniseedy taste though - I bought a mandolin recently so I could slice up things like fennel into super thin slices for salads. First go, I managed to slice my finger instead.... Still, I'll be giving it another go for this!

  9. What a great idea; I tend to only eat fennel raw (slightly numbs your tongue)or roasted- never thought about an in between prep. Any suggestions on what to do with the dilly fur on top?

  10. Joey, I have heard horror story after horror story about mandolins! Be careful! You are adventurous to still be willing to work with that monster appliance.

    Abby, how do you usually eat it raw? Coleslaw or something? I wonder about the furry fronds... I'm sure you could just chop them in with the rest of it and dust it on top with the dill but they never seemed to have much of a flavor to me so I didn't have a problem tossing them. Alternately, freeze them for broth?

  11. Oh my god, this looks so good. I don't think I've ever consciously eaten fennel (except for the seeds), but this looks like an excellent combination. Yum!!!


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