April 3, 2014
When it comes to salad, it’s all about eating your colors.
In winter, I love white.
In spring, it’s all about green.
And between the two, only a light shade of green will do.
This refreshing Fennel and Celery Salad is the perfect transitional, early spring salad. And it doesn’t have leaves, which is always a bonus with kids!
Every winter I get completely obsessed with white salads made with any combination of thinly shaved fennel, celery root, parsnips, turnips, and cauliflower. I have a hard time moving on from them when spring arrives, especially before the market is bursting with peak season, emerald green veggies. I also love the texture of shaved winter vegetable salads. It takes a while to get reacquainted with leafy lettuces.
This salad helps.
I like throwing celery root into this salad while it’s still available for some heft and, well, because I love celery root. You can skip it, though, and this will still be delicious. You can also replace pomegranate seeds with orange segments or skip the fruit moment all together.
Fennel and Celery Salad
(Can be shared with kids 12+ mos)*
For the dressing
(Makes 1 cup; you will have leftover)
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
3/4 cup olive oil
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 teaspoon honey, pomegranate syrup, or fig jam
For the salad
2 small or 1 large bulbs of fennel, washed, trimmed and halved
2 stalks celery, washed and trimmed
1/2 small celery root, peeled
Pomegranate seeds or orange segments, pith removed, for garnish (optional)
1. Begin making the dressing by pouring vinegar into a mason jar and adding the chopped garlic. Allow the garlic to sit in the vinegar for 5-10 minutes while you prep the vegetables.
2. Thinly slice the fennel, celery, and celery root using a chef’s knife or, preferably, a mandolin.
3. Return to your dressing: add olive oil, lemon juice, choice of sweetener, and salt. Seal the jar and shake vigorously until the dressing emulsifies. (Alternatively, in step one, allow the garlic and vinegar to sit in a bowl. In this step, add lemon juice, sweetener, and salt and begin whisking, slowly adding olive oil all the while.)
4. Toss veggies with dressing keeping in mind that you won’t need to use all of it. Taste and adjust salt. Garnish and serve.
*Note: As long as the dressing is made with a sweetener other than honey, this can be shared with kids younger than 12-months-old, though the texture may be a challenge. If you decide to try and share this with a beginner eater, be sure to skip the honey because of the risk of botulism that it presents to children under 12-months-old.