3 June 2013

Pistachio, Orange & Fennel Salad

Sometimes you need to remind yourself to slowdown, to sleep more, to eat better, to appreciate the simple things like warm doonas and cuddling cats on a cold morning, or piles of yellow ginkgo leaves in the park. Whatever you are doing - or overdoing - it's almost the middle of the year and it's time to have a break, not take on so much and just say no to things to free up time for you. This recipe is simple, super quick to prepare, good for you and delicious. We have just had the first day of winter so to stave off a cold, and generally keep you feeling fit, pistachios are ideal as they are energy rich with mono-unsaturated fat, antioxidants, vitamin E, B-complex vitamins and full of beneficial minerals like copper, zinc and selenium. Combine this wonder nut with the vitamin C in oranges and fennel, your vitamins A and K (among many others) from spinach and you have energy in a bowl.

Ingredients (serves 4 with dinner):
1/3 - 1/2 cup fresh pistachios (or dry roasted if you can't get fresh)
2 oranges
1 large bulb fennel
1/4 red onion
2 large handfuls fresh baby spinach leaves
lemon juice
extra virgin olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
If using fresh pistachios remove the outer skin and using a nut cracker split the shells to remove the soft green kernels. 

To segment the orange, cut off the top and bottom of the orange just so you can see the flesh, then place the orange cut end down and carefully cut away the rest of the peel removing as little of the flesh as possible. Using a sharp knife cut into the middle of the orange along the inside of the membranes that separate each segment. Continue until all the segments are removed and only the membrane remains.

Using a mandoline slicer on its finest setting slice the fennel (white bulb and green stalks but not leaves) and the red onion. Combine with washed baby spinach leaves, orange segments and pistachios. Drizzle with olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice the season with salt and pepper to taste.

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