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Thursday, February 14, 2013

Fennel, Apple, Aged Cheddar and Caramelized Pecan Salad

Added a few orange beet chips for colour - totally optional but really good and easy to make

Spending weekends at the cottage is something we have really come to enjoy.  They say that the best way to make it through a Canadian winter is to get involved in outdoor sports and activities.  With the amount of snow we have gotten  this year, we have been following this advice and I have to admit that so far the winter is flying by.

We've discovered a few wonderful restaurants in the St-Sauveur village, one that offers wonderful Asian fusion cuisine called Marabou.  This is my version of their wonderful fennel salad that I had to recreate at home.

What makes it so original is the combination of flavours.  It has a little of everything + fennel is really refreshing.

You will need:  Serves 4

  • 1 large fennel bulb, sliced thinly with a mandolin or shredded
  • 1 red golden delicious apple (or whatever type you have, it should be a sweeter variety)
  • caramelized pecans (you can make your own or buy ready made)
  • 1/2 cup of grated aged cheddar
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of seasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup of caramelized pecans, roughly chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Start by thinly slicing or shredding the fennel (remove the top shoots and center core as it is too tough);

2.  Place the sliced (shredded) fennel in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil (2tbsp) and seasoned rice wine vinegar (2 tbsp);

3.  Allow the fennel to marinate at room temperature for 15 - 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes;

4.  Added the shredded aged cheddar (1/2 cup) and chopped caramelized pecans (1/3 cup);

5.  You can choose to grate or dice the apple (in this recipe, I used 3/4 of the apple) , keeping the peel to add color.  It should be added at the last minute in order to avoid browning.  Stir in well with the fennel to saturate it with the vinegar (this will help avoid discolouration);

6.  Season with salt and pepper and serve.

To  make the orange beet chips: 

  • 1 small orange beet
  • olive oil
  • salt

1.  Preheat oven to 250°F (120°C);

2.  It is easiest to slice the beets thinly with a mandolin if you have one.  If not, take your time and do it by hand;

3.  Brush a parchment lined baking sheet with olive oil and lay the beet slices evenly without allowing them to overlap;

4.  Brush the tops of the chips with a little olive oil;

5.  Bake for 20 minutes and turn the chips;

6.  Bake for another 30 minutes until the chips are nice and crisp;

7.  Season with salt, enjoy!

For other great recipes see:  Thai Chicken Noodle Salad with MangoTomato Mozzarella Salad with PestoRoasted Potato Salad and Cucumber Tagliateli Salad
Happy Valentine's Day! xo

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