Welcome home spring with this refreshing radish and fennel salad recipe. Just toss together thinly sliced radish, and fennel with arugula leaves and drizzle a simple lemon dressing. The salad is low-calorie, gluten-free, vegan and packed with plant-based nutrition.
Fresh fennel has recently started showing up in my supermarket’s veggie racks. Every time I crossed it, I wondered how it would taste. Because of its resemblance to an onion, I couldn’t think of it as a raw salad vegetable. In India, we eat fennel seeds all the time. I won’t be surprised if we are biggest consumers of fennel seeds. It is such an essential mouth refresher and digestive after every meal, in every household. And yet I have never seen a fresh fennel bulb in any grocery store in India.
Yesterday was the first time I prepared and ate a fennel salad. Before we go any further, I want to tell you 5 reasons why you should eat this radish, arugula and fennel salad!
Health benefits of Radish and Fennel Salad
- Raw fennel is rich in dietary fiber, Vitamin A, C, potassium, and calcium. Health benefits of fennel include improved digestion, increased immunity, healthy bones, and reduced blood pressure.
- Radish is high in Vitamin C, folic acid, and potassium. The red color of the radish is more than just a pretty color. It comes from a red plant pigment called anthocyanin Anthocyanin is a powerful antioxidant that prevents cardiovascular disease by protecting cells from damage.
- Both radish and arugula leaves are part of the cruciferous family of vegetables that have high cancer-fighting properties.
- Chia and hemp seeds are rich in proteins, essential for muscle building and repair.
- Each full-meal serving of this raw salad is only 68 calories. With plenty of fiber, the salad keeps you full for longer and helps maintain a healthy weight and good digestion.
I am sure I am speaking to a minority when I ask, “Have you ever had fresh fennel?”. Okay, another question. Have you ever wondered what does fennel look like? To me, the fennel bulb looks like a hand with some dill-like leaves coming out of the fingers! As if someone had put some celery fingers on top of an onion palm. What do you think?
It was all to change yesterday when I finally picked up one fennel bulb in my grocery basket. I came back home and tasted the bulb, the stalk, and the leaves. I was taken by surprise when I ate the first slice of fennel bulb. It was so much like fennel seeds just more juicer! It tasted nothing like an onion, celery, or dill.
Since we are such big fans of fennel seeds, a fennel salad sounded perfect. Then I was thinking what would go with fennel salad. And I thought radish! The spicy sweetness of radishes would perfectly go with the anise-like fennel flavor. And I thought arugula leaves and so was born this simple radish and fennel salad recipe.
If you like this recipe, please take a moment to rate it and/or leave your comments at the end of the blog. It will really encourage me to keep exploring, learning and improving.
Radish and Fennel Salad with lemon dressing
Ingredients (1cup = 240ml; 1tbsp = 15ml; 1tsp = 5ml)
- 5 pink radish bulbs
- 1 fennel bulb
- 2 cups arugula leaves
- 1 tsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp hemp seeds
- ¼ cup fresh parsley
- 1 lemon
- Salt to taste
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- Thinly slice radish and fennel. Keep the dill-like fennel leaves too
- In a serving plate, place the arugula leaves. Top with sliced radish and fennel.
- Sprinkle fresh parsley, chia and hemp seeds. Zest a lemon directly onto the salad.
- In a small bowl, mix together lemon juice, salt, and pepper to make the salad dressing.
- Pour over the salad and serve.
- Part of the taste is in the texture of thinly sliced or shaved fennel and radish. You can also use a mandolin to get even slices.
- If you find radish’s a bit too spicy, sprinkle some salt on the radish slices and keep them aside for 10 minutes. That would cut the spiciness.
- I like the simple lemon dressing with this recipe, but to make a lemon vinaigrette, simply add 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil to the dressing.
I love how salads provide the ultimate playground to play with fruit and vegetable combinations, dressings and toppings of seeds and nuts. You should totally download my free soups and salad ebook for more ideas to start your salad meals.
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