This healthy, crispy fennel salad with grilled cherry tomatoes is a typical example of a fall and winter salad. The soft hints of licorice combine well with the intense sweetness of the roasted cherry tomatoes. The creaminess of the yogurt dressing and nuts -if used- compliment this with softness and richness. And this salad is very easy and quick to make. The health benefits of fresh fennel and of lightly grilled tomatoes in olive oil (vitamins A, E and C in tomatoes and vitamins B and C in fennel) have been well publicized.
The art of making fennel salad
Cut away the fennel fronds and stems. Use the fennel fronds in the salad. Optionally reserve the stems for making a vegetable broth later. Use a sharp cooks knife to cut slivers from the fennel bulb across the grain. It is important to keep the fennel slivers in contact with the dressing for several hours. In that time the tomatoes can be slow-grilled. For the dressing, be careful not to deviate too much from the indicated proportions. The lactic acidity of the yoghurt can be overwhelming when used in too large proportion.
1. Exercise care with the addition of apple. The fresh notes of the apple can easily overwhelm the subtle faint taste of licorice that the fennel displays. I prefer the addition of some honey and not overdose the yogurt.
2. For a full vegan version, leave out the yogurt. Instead consider to add some pistachio nuts or freshly peeled walnuts to the salad