Do you ever crave a fresh salad that is easy to make, crunchy, sweet, savory and satisfying? If so, this Fennel, Apple, Pecan and Gorgonzola salad might just exceed your expectations. Several weeks ago I created and served this salad to my friends and each person enjoyed the fresh and vibrant tastes and textures in the salad.
One of the cooking classes that I took at Tante Marie in San Francisco featured Tori Ritchie who is a wonderful chef and teacher. She introduced us to the concept of using lemon juice, olive oil along with salt and pepper as the dressing to a salad. She also encouraged us to use our hands to toss the salad. With this salad, I did not use my hands, but did employ her techniques. The fun thing about this method is that you need to taste along the way to ensure the correct balance is there for you.
A few tips:
- Use the best olive oil that you can find
- Fleur de Sel enhances the flavor in the salad versus regular salt
- If meyer lemons are in season and available to you, use them
- Fresh ground pepper outshines pre-ground versions
- Chill the matchstick apples and fennel prior to tossing
4 Green Apples2 Fennel Bulbs
1 C. Gorgonzola Cheese, crumbled
¾ C. Pecans, chopped and toasted
2 – 3 Lemons
Fleur de Sel
Fresh Ground Pepper
Peel the apples and core. Create matchstick slices and let sit in a bowl of water with 2 to 3 tablespoons of lemon juice.
Trim the fennel bulbs and core. Use a very sharp knife or mandolin to create paper thin slices.
When ready to toss and serve, drain the apples and pat dry. Add to a large bowl. Add the fennel, gorgonzola cheese and pecans. The dressing is a taste process. Add about the juice of one lemon and drizzle with the olive oil. Toss together and taste. Season with salt and pepper. Add more lemon juice and/or olive oil until you achieve the balance you desire. Taste one more time for season.