I have a confession to make. I am a subscriber of Gwyneth Paltrow’s oddly named GOOP e-newsletter. Now in my defence, it’s not because I love her acting or anything (she’s okay but not my favourite). I actually signed up for the entertainment factor because I’m easily amused by her Martha/Oprah wanna-be efforts.
So here’s another confession – on Saturday I made one of the newsletter’s recipes, based on a Mario Batali dish. And it was really good! This recipe lets me use two ingredients I’ve never cooked or baked with before – blood oranges and fennel.
I picked up a bag of blood oranges during my Costco trip from the previous weekend and immediately started searching my cookbooks and saved recipes for something good to make. A quick trip to the grocery store last night netted me some fresh fennel. This salad is crisp and clean tasting, and is a refreshing change from regular salads. It’s probably not the cheapest salad to make, although I guess you could substitute the blood oranges for regular navel oranges or maybe even mandarin oranges.
Fennel and blood orange salad
Adapted from a recipe by Gwyneth Paltrow, based on a dish by Mario Batali
2 fennel bulbs, shaved thinly with a mandoline (Original recipe also says you can use a vegetable peeler but that takes forever and I got fed up part way through. So I switched to my cheese grater and made it into a fennel coleslaw instead.)
1/4 cup fennel fronds (the wispy green bits that look like dill)
4 blood oranges, segmented with skin and pith discarded (Good tutorial on how to segment an orange can be found here. I also made sure to segment the juicy oranges over a bowl to catch any juice as the juice becomes part of the salad dressing.)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
coarse salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
Toss all ingredients together and taste. Add more olive oil, salt and/or pepper if needed. Serve while the fennel is still crispy.