You can throw this apple fennel salad together in a few short minutes and it’s sure to impress your dinner guests. My kids love fennel for its sweet licorice taste, and it’s one vegetable they never complain about eating. For this recipe you can use any type of apple but I recommend one that holds its color once cut, and that is fairly acidic – a Gala apple, Granny Smith Apple, or other very tart apple.
Pernod and Ricard are both anise-based herb and alcohol concoctions that are typically served in a tall glass with water and ice; they go down great on a hot summer day. Either one will accentuate the licorice like flavor of the fennel.
Note that the fennel referred to here (Florence fennel) is often mislabelled as Anise in supermarkets and greengrocers. Anything called fennel or anise that looks like a big white bulb with green stalks sticking out of it will do the trick.
For this apple fennel salad we used key limes for the acid of the dressing – to give a more distinct character to the dressing. But that’s also because we had some handy – regular limes or even lemons will do equally well.
1 med to large bulb fennel
2 apples (Gala)
1/3 cup lime or lemon juice (key limes work great!)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tp Pernod or Ricard
freshly ground pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1. Cut away the pithy core of the fennel bulb and cut off most of the stalks, which also tend to be pithy.
2. Slice the fennel into thin slivers. Place in a small salad bowl.
3. Quarter and core the apples, then slice very thinly and add to the salad bowl.
4. Add the lime or lemon juice, olive oil, Pernod or Ricard, and pepper and salt to a separate bowl. Whisk together and pour over the salad.
5. Serve room temperature, sprinkled with more freshly ground black pepper.
The licorice or anise flavor in this apple fennel salad may overwhelm some people so be sure to keep servings small. This goes nicely with a cold Chardonnay or a dry Riesling. Better yet, hard apple cider.