Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Fennel, Apple and Radicchio Slaw

This is the salad I made for Thanksgiving. I am so behind that maybe I will have Thanksgiving stuff posted before Christmas....then again...maybe not. Anyhow The recipe comes from a blog called What Would Cathy Eat.

Mrblocko agreed that this is more slaw like than a salad. Maybe because when you slice up the radicchio it looks like shredded red cabbage. Radicchio tastes nothing like red cabbage. Radicchio is very bitter. I always forget this.

The salad was almost too bitter for us. All three of us were very unsure whether or not we actually liked the salad. Then, I had a brilliant idea. Raisins. Raisins totally saved this salad. Their sweetness really offset the bitterness of the radicchio. I don't have an exact amount for the raisins. I just sprinkled a few on top of our individual portions.

Because it was only three of us eating this huge salad, we were sick of it by the time it was gone. (In fact, I distinctly recall both Mrblocko and Blockette cheering when I dished out the last bowl for myself.) I did poll the family and they agreed that they would eat it as a side dish again. Next time I will add about a teaspoon of sugar to the dressing , and saute the shallots. I think this will also help cut the bitterness. Besides raisins, I think dried pineapple or mango flavored pineapple would also be tasty. I might give those dried fruits a try next time as well.

Fennel, Radicchio and Apple Salad from What Would Cathy Eat
1 medium head radicchio, cored and thinly sliced
1 large or two small fennel bulbs, sliced paper thin with a mandoline, fronds reserved
1 large crisp, sweet apple (such as Cortland or Gala), unpeeled, thinly sliced with a mandoline
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (use a gluten-free variety if you are gluten sensitive)
1 small shallot, finely minced
Pinch of salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup chopped pecans, toasted

Combine the radicchio, fennel and apple in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, shallot, salt and pepper. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. Pour half of dressing over veg and stir to combine. Taste, and gradually add more dressing until it’s to your liking. Garnish with fennel fronds and pecans.  Serves 4-6

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