Passover recipes always seem to me to be an unhealthier version of something you actually want to eat. Everything feels heavy- lots of matzo based product, brick-like desserts with lots of margarine, and of course lots of meat filled meals. You end up feeling comatose by the second day and you (maybe I?) are already planning what your post-Passover cleanse will look like.
Over the next couple of days I will be sharing a bunch of recipes for the holiday. Today we are starting with two salads. These salads are the perfect accompaniment for any meal. They add great color and really highlight their main ingredients. The more salads and vegetable dishes you incorporate into the Passover schedule the less likely you are to turn to those matzo meal muffins that could double as a baseball. Also, serving a few salads together would be a great way to keep your Seder meal filled with plant based dishes and not letting the meat and poultry take over.
Tick, tock, tick, tock. The holiday is coming up - let's get started.
Fennel Salad with Citrus and Walnuts
1 medium fennel bulb, washed
1 large orange
1 large pink grapefruit
3/4 cup walnuts, halved
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon of Mint, large chop
½ teaspoon ground cumin (omit this if you do not eat kitniyot/legumes on Passover)
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Yield: 6 appetizer sized portions
Take your fennel cut off the tops and disregard (or save if you are making a soup you can throw it into). Cut the fennel down the center, length wise. Slice the fennel in long thin strips. Toss into a medium salad bowl.
Using a serrated knife, cut a slice off the top and bottom off of the fruit so that it will stand on its own. Start cutting off the rest of skin and the pith. When you're done the flesh of the fruit should be completely exposed with no white skin remaining. Place a bowl on the counter and start segmenting the fruit. This is done by holding the fruit in one hand and with the other cutting the segments out. Run the knife inside the skin of each segment so that the fruit pops out into the bowl below. When you are finished, add the fruit pieces and the walnuts to the fennel.
Drizzle the olive oil and lemon over the salad. Then sprinkle on the seasoning and herbs. Toss and serve. This salad can be prepared the day before and dressed prior to serving. It is even good enough to keep your lunch the next day- doesn’t get soggy (but not good enough for company).