Fennel is one of my “newer” foods in my recipes. After a delicious fennel salad last summer in a local restaurant, I started buying fennel regularly. According to the World’s Healthiest Foods (www.whfoods.com) fennel has good amounts of antioxidants to ward off free radicals, is an excellent source of Vitamin C, helps keep your colon healthy, and its potassium is helpful against high blood pressure. The article also reveals that one of the phytonutrient (See Glossary.) compounds called anethole has shown to reduce inflammation and also may have anti-cancer effects. (See full article on the website.)
Fennel bulbs are what are used inmost dishes. The feathery fronds can be used as garnish or maybe in soup stock.
Because fennel has a licorice-like flavor, I decided to couple it with strawberries. Strawberry availability will be dwindling, but fennel will be available from autumn through spring, so this may be the perfect time to create this salad. I made it without measuring everything, so some of the amounts are up to you. And since September is Organic Harvest Month, I am suggesting you buy the greens & the berries organic. I could not find organic fennel, but it is not on EWG’s Dirty Dozen, so I think it’s low in pesticides.
Spinach salad with Strawberries & Fennel
Utensils: Cutting board & knife, strainer, bowl, serving platter
Prep. Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: None
Categories: Vegan*, gluten-free, no added sugar
2-3 cups organic baby spinach (Or other greens of your choice), washed and wrapped in a towel to dry or in spun in a salad spinner
1 cup organic, sliced strawberries
thinly sliced fennel (about 1/2 cup)
1-2 T. slivered almonds
1 Tbl. olive oil or other oil such as almond, avocado, hazelnut
1 Tbl. orange or grapefruit juice (or a combo of both)
1. Place the washed/dried baby spinach in a large bowl. Add washed and sliced strawberries and slivered almonds. Add sliced fennel.
2. Toss the items together and place on a large serving plate. Garnish with sprouts.
3. Drizzle one tablespoon of oil over the salad (not the sprouts). Then drizzle one tablespoon of the citrus juice on top. (I did not toss the salad again, but you could, if you wish.)
Serves 2. (This was my lunch, so I ate the whole thing!)
*Variation: If you are not vegan, feel free to add feta cheese chunks or use in place of almonds.