April 15, 2018


My Wood Salad Bowl: Orange and Fennel with Pistachio Nuts

My wood salad bowl might just be a wood serving tray!  This fennel and blood orange salad looked so delicious arrayed on the surface of the wood cutting board as I was prepping the salad, that is how I decided to serve it.  It made a beautiful serve yourself salad at lunch for friends. 
While shopping I spied the blood red oranges and knew their deep color would contrast beautifully with the pale green fennel and deeper green salad greens.  Navel oranges are just fine in this salad, really the standard.  I like the crunch of nuts and taste of the pistachios with the sweetness of the fennel.  Pine nuts also work well, a classic Mediterranean pairing.  Add chopped pitted olives as Mindy Fox does in her version of this salad recipe in her cook book salads: beyond the bowl.

When you have a salad like this one, which is really a composed salad, it is common sense to layer your ingredients on a wood cutting board with deep juice rings like this one, to catch extra dressing dressing and an errant pistachio nut or two.  And of course, use our flat folding salad tongs for serving!

Salad ingredients (4 servings):
  • 1 large fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced, fronds set aside for garnish
  • 3 blood oranges, sliced, with juice reserved
  • 1/4 cup pistachio nut kernels, lightly toasted and chopped
  • 3-4 cups mixed salad greens
Vinaigrette ingredients:
  • 1/2 shallot bulb, finely diced
  • 1/2 t. mustard
  • 2 T. white wine vinegar
  • 1 T. reserved orange juice
  • 6 T. olive oil (a citrus flavored oil if you have one)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Soak the diced shallot in the wine vinegar and orange juice to soften while you make the salad.  Then mix with the remaining ingredients in a shaker jar.  Super easy to use a shaker jar like this one, or whisk all the ingredients together in a small bowl.

To make the salad:

With a sharp knife, remove the peel and white pith from the oranges, and slice 1/4 inch thick, reserving the orange juice for the salad dressing.  Remove the stalks and frond from the fennel and core.  Slice into thin strips, a mandolin works well for this.  Combine the fennel with about 1/4 of the vinaigrette.  Toss the salad greens with the remaining dressing, reserving a tablespoon, then arrange the greens on a wood serving board.  Layer with the blood orange slices and top with the fennel.  Drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette and finish with the  toasted, chopped pistachio nuts.  Healthy, delicious and easy to make.  Enjoy!

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