Shaved Fennel and Grapefruit Salad


A few weeks ago I catered a three-course plated dinner for 10 at my office. Now, I love a good dinner party, but I’d never actually done a plated dinner. My normal routine, cooking yummy food then making people serve themselves, wasn’t going to fly. Commence googling of food pics. About three hours later, I found this epic shaved fennel salad with fresh citrus that doesn’t just look pretty…it is an explosion of awesomeness in the mouth. That is not an exaggeration. With a few easy tweaks it was the perfect starter to a great meal!

Shaved Fennel and Grapefruit Salad (Serves 10 as an appetizer) 

  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts
  • 2 large fennel bulbs, leaves and stems trimmed off
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 large ruby grapefruits
  • 2 small shallots, peeled and cut into paper-thin slices
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • salt and pepper
  1. Toast nuts in a dry skillet over medium heat. Let cool. Roll the hazelnuts around in a dishcloth to loosen skins. Chop coarsely and set aside.
  2. Slice fennel very thinly with a sharp knife or on a mandolin. Toss in a bowl with salt, pepper, and lemon juice.
  3. Supreme grapefruits, holding over a small bowl to collect juice. Add grapefruit segments and 1/2 of juice to the bowl of fennel.
  4. Add shallots, olive oil, and lime zest. Toss lightly and portion onto plates. Sprinkle nuts around the edge of the plate and serve.

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