Raw spring salad of asparagus, fennel + blood orange

It’s hard to call this a recipe when I can count the ingredients on one hand and there is no cooking involved. But rest assured, that does not make it any less delicious!  Celebrating the best of fresh spring produce, I love this raw salad of crunchy and tasty ingredients. The quantities are a but of a guesstimate as I didn’t measure things as I made it. So my advice – go with taste.

Ingredients  – serves 4 as a side

8 large spears of asparagus

2 small bulbs of fennel

2 small blood oranges

fennel fronds

3 tablespoons blood orange juice (caught from when you cut and segmented the oranges)

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tsp seeded mustard

salt and pepper

Method

Trim the stalk of the asparagus by snapping off the woody end. Using a vegetable peeler, peel long thin strips of asparagus. I find it easiest to start at the stalk end and peel towards the tip.  Place the asparagus in a large bowl.

After chopping off the fronds (but keeping them for later), use a V-slicer, a mandolin, or some good knife work, to finely slice the fennel from bottom to top. Add to the bowl and toss through to mix.

Peel and segment your blood oranges. This is the hardest thing to do in the recipe, but with a bit of practice is useful skill to have. The aim to get the segments out of their membrane for prettier presentation. If you can’t be bothered, normal segments are fine. If you want to give it a try, here are the steps:

  1. Carefully slice off the top and bottom of the orange
  2. Using even downward strokes, slice the skin away from the flesh
  3. Remove any remaining white pith
  4. Cut between the membranes to remove each segment. Do this over a bowl to retain the juice.

Gently whisk the oil, juice, mustard and salt and pepper together.  Drizzle over the salad just prior to serving.

 

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