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Course 1: Fennel, Apple, and Grapefruit Salad

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fennel-salad-olive-press
This course was inspired by a recent visit to San Francisco’s SPQR restaurant.
I chose the Olive Press Mission extra virgin olive oil (medium fruit) because it lends
a substantial olive flavor without overpowering the delicate fennel; and the apple undertone in the oil marries nicely with the apple slices in the salad.

Post 2 in a series of 5. Click here to see the premise of the 4-course
evoo-inspired meal. Plate: Paula West Pottery

Fennel, Apple, and Grapefruit Salad
Serves 4

2 ruby red grapefruits
2 fennel bulbs
1 apple
1/8 cup fresh mint leaves
A few sprigs of dill
1 shallot or 1/4 red onion, about 1/8 cup, thinly sliced
1/2 cup Olive Press Mission EVOO
Sea salt
Freshly cracked black pepper

Note: Unless you are an amazing slicer, this recipe requires the use of a mandolin in order to create very thin slices of both the fennel and the apple.

Cut off the top and bottom ends of grapefruit. Stand it on one flat side. Starting at the top of the fruit, cut off all the peel and white pith, following the outer curve. Cut in a downward motion between membranes and release the segments. Cut the segments in half lengthwise and place them in a small bowl. Squeeze any juice from the leftover grapefruit into another small bowl. Repeat with second grapefruit. (This can be made one day ahead. Cover juice and segments separately and chill.)

Place the thinly sliced shallot in a bowl of water to reduce its pungency.

Prepare the fennel. If the top stalk is still attached to the fennel, cut away and discard it. Cut off the very bottom layer of the base. Wash and dry the fennel bulbs. Cut in half lengthwise. You will see a triangle shape at the base of each half. Cut away this piece and any green sprouts.

cut-fennel-olive press

With the mandolin at its thinnest setting, slice the fennel in a downward motion. Slices should have a slightly transparent look and flop over easily. Set aside in a large mixing bowl.

Wash and dry the apple. Adjust the mandolin to a slightly wider setting. Slice the apple on the mandolin, turning it at intervals, until you reach the core. Put the apple in the bowl containing grapefruit juice to keep it from browning.

fennel-salad-grapefruit-apples

Remove the shallot from the water and pat dry on a paper towel.

To the sliced fennel add the grapefruit segments, apple (removed from juice), shallot, mint, dill, the olive oil, and the salt and pepper to taste. Add a little grapefruit juice (optional). Stir to combine.

Cook’s notes:

  • You can substitute regular or blood orange for the grapefruit if you prefer.
  • You could also use Olive Press Blood Orange¬†EVOO here.

olive-press-mission-extra-virgin-olive-oil

Mar. 01 2010 |

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