Apple and Cucumber Salad with Fennel and Pomegranate
I like the simple elegance of this dish. It’s great for a dinner party, but simple enough for an everyday salad too. The sweet-tart apples pair well with the sweet fennel and juicy bursts from the pomegranate seeds. The cucumbers help to balance out the flavors.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 4 sides
1 lemon, zest and 2 tablespoons juice
3 tablespoons lemon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
Pinch of sugar, optional
1/2 small fennel bulb, cored, fronds reserved for garnish
1 small Persian or lemon cucumber
1/2 Granny Smith apple, cored, and very thinly sliced
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds, from half a pomegranate
Coarse sea salt for finishing
Large plate or platter
In a jar or small bowl grate the zest from the lemon and squeeze 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Add the 3 tablespoons lemon extra virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt, and a pinch of sugar. Whisk vigorously to combine.
Cut the pomegranate in half and remove the seeds from 1/4 to 1/2 the pomegranate. Set aside.
Remove a couple tablespoons of fennel fronds from fennel tops to reserve for garnish. Trim the tops off the fennel and cut out the core. With a mandoline or very sharp knife carefully slice half the fennel bulb into very thin slices. Set aside.
Thinly slice the cucumber into rounds. Set aside.
Cut the half apple in half again so you have two quarters and remove the core. Thinly slice the apple.
On large serving platter, alternate the thin cucumber and apple slices, layering and overlapping a bit. I like to do this in a circle pattern around the platter.
Distribute the shaved fennel over the cucumber and apple slices. Sprinkle the pomegranate seeds over the salad and garnish with the reserved fennel fronds.
Whisk the dressing again to combine and drizzle it over the salad. If using, sprinkle coarse sea salt over the salad and serve.