Winter salads don’t need your bad rap. While I love slaws and hearty grain salads, it’s nice to mix things up with a bright, light salad that isn’t a slouch in the flavour department. Fennel, red onion, grapefruit and blood orange combine with romaine to create a perfectly lovely salad that will have people at your table wanting seconds. It’s that good.
It may look like a lot of red onion up there, but don’t worry, the onions are lightly pickled in lemon/grapefruit/blood orange juice and so their harsh bite is erased. It also lends a cool crunch alongside the crisp fennel slices – it’s amazing what a little juice can do! As for the dressing, I made it texturally light (ie, it’s of the runny variety) but if you want a thicker vinaigrette, just add a bit more dijon and honey to give it some bounce.
If you’re looking at the photos trying to figure out where the grapefruit slices are, you’re right, it’s not in these photos. I made this salad 3 times in one week (yes, it really is that good) and the final time I was out of grapefruit, so I just used blood orange. The salad was still a knockout, but I missed the sharpness that the grapefruit delivered, so there you go.
elsewhere: Ever had hummus pizza? Well I dish it out over at Poppytalk and it’s delicious. And check out this amazing comic about kale over at ReadyMade. I also discuss the joys of bars & games, so comment over at ReadyMade and share your favorite bar games.
fennel, grapefruit, & blood orange salad
1 blood orange
1/2 red onion, sliced thinly
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 head romaine lettuce
1/2 bulb fennel, sliced thinly
3 T roasted walnut oil
1 t dijon mustard
1/2 t honey or agave syrup
salt & pepper
Remove the fruit peel with a knife, making sure to remove all pith. Section the orange and the grapefruit by cutting into the fruit section by section, leaving the tough walls & any seeds behind. Place the sections into bowl and reserve any leftover juice into another small bowl.
Add the red onion slices into the bowl with the reserved juice and top up the liquid with lemon juice. Set aside.
Wash, dry and tear lettuce into your serving bowl. Scatter fennel, grapefruit and blood orange sections on top. Remove the onion slices from the juice (reserving juice for the dressing) and add those to the salad.
Prepare dressing by whisking together the reserved juice, dijon, oil, honey or agave and a good pinch of salt and a good grind of black pepper. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Pour over salad and toss. Makes 4 side salads or 2 large plates full.
This looks so good! I love the colours, and I bet the flavour is amazing! I shall be giving this a go for our next dinner party in a few weeks 🙂
I make a salad very similar to this in winter with citrus and a mustard-walnut oil vinaigrette. Never with fennel or blood orange before. I’m quite fond of fennel and citrus together, so I’ll have to try your recipe.
Nice! I make a fennel salad with mandarin oranges and olives–the blood oranges are a nice twist!
Man, I’m all about blood oranges right now. So good!!
oh i bet that roasted walnut oil tasted fabulous in this. Mmm. i always love your combo’s.
What a coincidence, I just picked up two fennel bulbs today at the market. Now I know what to do with them. I love plenty of raw onions in my salad but I also like the idea of marinating the onions in the citrus juice. I seldom buy grapefruit so I will be quite happy just using regular oranges with this salad.
It’s definitely important not to forget how delicious winter veggies can be. I’m not the biggest raw fennel fan but if I caramelized it a bit…I’m pretty sure I’d find heaven in that salad.
I discovered fennel for the first time this winter and have been enjoying it. I make a similar salad, and I love how you added the Romaine as well. Great way to balance and soften the fennel flavors. Great photos, too! 🙂
Juice-pickled red onions? What a fantastic idea. I’m a big fan of raw onion in salads, but I’m embarrassed to breathe on anyone after eating them…this seems like a socially-acceptable alternative. 🙂
beautiful… and i always love your blog post titles… you use great descriptors… ^__^
Beautiful and so colorful! Love the flavor combo, too. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks Eva, it’s very delicious and bright tasting!
Heather, give it a try!
Mmmm, olives would be delicious. Nice call, Rowdy chowgirl!
Me too, Kimberly!
Aw, thanks vanillasugarblog!
Perfect coincidence, Bijoux! Hope you enjoy it even without the grapefruit 🙂
Joanne, I’ve never caramelized it. Sounds great!
Rivki, I like the balance of flavours here – everything blends really nicely.
Yup, Maddie, I did it and it’s delicious! This would be the perfect raw-onions-at-lunch compromise!
Thanks Lyndsay, you’re the sweetest!
Beautiful photos! I definitely want to try this recipe; I want to try and incorporate more fennel into my life!
Wow, that’s a salad with a kick to it! And purdy, too.
Definitely a cure for the winter blues! This is the second recipe I’ve seen this week that uses walnut oil so you’ve convinced me to try it! Thanks, it’s delicious!
Thanks Aimee! This is a great intro to fennel 🙂
I think so too, Jessica. Try it, it’s delicious.
This sounds delicious! In the spring I like to make a salad with fennel,orange,parsley,and sometimes snowpeas, but grapefruit sounds like the perfect addition, And I get this information during grapefruit season, perfect.
Thanks Andy, enjoy!