Fennel Lettuce Salad is a pretty commonly served Greek salad in many restaurants and taverns in central Greece and the Ionian Islands, but it is also a loved crispy summer salad in many Greek homes. Freshness of romaine lettuce and radicchio give by default a summery taste to any salad, but fennel brings its amazing aroma and crispiness to the bite of this salad.
Fennel has a long history in Greek cuisine, both in salads and cooked dishes. Native to Mediterranean region, it decorates Greek sea-coastal areas. In the ancient times in Greece, fennel was called marathon, and gave its name to the Marathon (place of fennel) where the Battle of Marathon took place. Marathon was an ancient city-state in Greece, and now the town nearby Athens.
Fennel also has a prominent spot in Greek mythology, since Prometheus used the stalk of fennel to steal fire from Zeus. Did that fire have something to do with Absinthe or not, it’s hard to tell. But, fennel is one of the main ingredients in this highly alcoholic Greek dessert beverage.
Fennel Lettuce Salad Recipe
• 2 hearts of romaine lettuce
• 1 head radicchio
• 1 bulb fennel, sliced
• 1 red onion, sliced
• Few walnuts
• Balsamic vinegar
• Olive oil
• Flat leaf parsley
• Salt and pepper
Wash well and shred romaine and radicchio. Add slices of red onion. Trim tops of fennel bulb and quarter lengthwise. Remove the hard heart from each piece and slice into thin pieces, Add slices to the lettuce and mix gently. Add chopped dill and parsley. Season the salad with a good amount of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, salt and freshly grounded black pepper. Throw a few walnuts for garnish and – voila!
This salad often has one or two additions, depending on the main dish you plan to serve it with. Sometimes, slices of tart apples go really well, sometimes sliced strawberries. Experimenting with this salad is endless.