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      RECIPE TITLE "Moroccan Fennel and Grapefruit Salad with Olives" from Vegetables Every Day: The Definitive Guide to Buying and Cooking Today's Produce, with Over 350 Recipes Copyright © 2001 by Jack Bishop

    yields Serves 4 as a first coursetime----difficulty easy

    Versions of this salad are popular throughout the Mediterranean, wherever fennel grows wild. Use the small black olives in brine, such as Nicoise or Gaeta olives. Although I prefer the floral note that mint adds, chopped parsley can be substituted.


    2 large red grapefruits
    1 large fennel bulb (about 1 1/4 pounds)
    1/2 cup small black olives
    12 large fresh mint leaves, cut into thin strips
    Freshly ground black pepper
    Pinch sweet paprika
    2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


    1. Trim thick slices from the ends of the grapefruits so they can sit flat on a work surface. Slice downward around the grapefruits to remove the peel and white pith. Sliced the peeled fruit crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick circles, removing any seeds. Place the slices and any juice they have given off in a large bowl.
    2. Trim and discard the stems and fronds from the fennel. Trim a thick slice from the base of the bulb and remove any tough or blemished outer layers. Cut the bulb in half through the base and use a small, sharp knife to remove the triangular piece of the core from each half. With each fennel piece flat side down and your knife parallel to the work surface, slice crosswise to yield several 1/4-inch-thick slices. Cut the slices lengthwise to yield long strips about 1/4 inch thick.
    3. Add the fennel, olives, and mint to the bowl with the grapefruits. Season with salt, pepper, and paprika to taste. Drizzle with the oil and toss gently. Serve immediately.

    Variation: Italian Fennel and Orange Salad
    In Italy, cooks are most likely to use oranges than grapefruits.
    Use 3 navel or blood oranges in place of the grapefruits and omit the paprika.


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