Raita Inspired Mint Fennel Salad

Try this zesty summer salad for something fresh, clean and crunchy.  Dressed with a smooth garlic vinaigrette, this is a simple recipe that will give a kick to your taste buds! It serves about 2 – 3 people as a side salad and lasts in the fridge for about 2-3 days.

Why fennel?

I must admit that for quite some time I was stumped about what to do with fennel. I knew fennel had many health benefits like fighting off heart disease but the licorice taste and fibrous texture threw me for a loop. I started looking up fennel recipes that all incorporated fruits but I wanted to keep this on the savoury side. I opted to throw in some cucumber and figured that a green garlic vinaigrette would do well with this dish but the key ingredient was still missing. Alas, that last ingredient was mint! It seems odd but I figure, why not? Mint and licorice make a good pair and it was different than other recipes I’d seen. Before I knew it, I was making a Raita flavoured salad.

Although this recipe does not have any yogurt, the smoothness of the dressing gives it a cream-like consistency which reminded me of the Raita yogurt served in Indian restaurants. Try it out and let me know what you think!

Raita inspired Mint Fennel Salad

A zesty summer salad both fresh and crunchy and dressed with a creamy mint vinaigrette.
Prep Time15 mins
Servings: 3 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 head fennel
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 green onion
  • 2/3 tsp cumin ground
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sunflower oil
  • 1/2 tsp Maple syrup
  • handful fresh mint

Instructions

  • In a food processor or blender, add apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, xanthan gum, garlic, green onion, salt, pepper and mint. Blend on high setting and slowly add in sunflower oil a little at a time.



  • Taste the dressing and adjust to taste. More maple syrup can be added if you desire a sweeter dressing.



  • Clean your cucumber and head of fennel removing any dirt or brown damaged layers.



  • Finely slide the fennel and cucumber with a knife or a mandoline slicer. Start with the bottom of the fennel bulb and keep cutting until it gets to the narrow stalks. Keep the green tops for garnishing. Set aside.



  • Wash, de-stem and chop handful of mint leaves.



  • Toss the fennel, cucumber and mint with the dressing, garnish with chopped top of the fennel bulb.




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