Need a little lighter fare after the weekend Super Bowl? This salad is one of my rare posts on a recipe that really isn't kid friendly, but it is so divine, I had to share.
But first, a story: this recipe is based on a dish I tasted when SPH and I were in San Fransisco a few years ago. I ate it at this sweet little Italian restaurant that, for the life of me, I cannot remember its name. It was so simple, so fresh and flavorful. Every time I eat this salad, I recall a leisurely, wonderful dinner sans kids. Ahh...it is a nice memory.
Citrus and Fennel Salad
Two heads of butter lettuce
1 small head of radichio
3-4 oranges or clementines, peeled, and cut into segments
1 small head of fennel* (also may be called "anise" in your grocery store), thinly sliced
A few radishes, thinly sliced
A dozen or so parmesan curls (take a hunk of parmesan and shave off the curls with a vegetable peeler)
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Place the lettuce, radichio, oranges, fennel, radishes (if using) and parmesan in a big bowl, tossing well to mix.
Mix the dressing in a separate bowl, then toss the salad with the dressing.
Take a few of the fennel fronds (whispy top portion of the fennel) and chop them and sprinkly on top.
Serves 6-8 for an appetizer, 3-4 for a main dish.
*never tasted fennel? It has a hint of a black licorice to its taste. But don't worry, I can't stand black licorice, but love this salad.