Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette

Fresh spring greens tossed with vibrant radishes and crisp fennel create this seasonal fennel & radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette. 

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

The air is finally starting to warm up outside, the sun is peeking out from behind the clouds, and the heaping mounds of snow have finally melted.

I think spring is well on its way.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

As the weather gets warmer and the sun shines longer, I begin to crave lighter meals made with fresh spring ingredients.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

As I was shopping at my local organic market, I came across a beautiful head (bulb?) of fennel. The sweet, pungent licorice notes and wispy green fronds lured me in. The next thing you know, it’s sitting in my basket ready to be crafted in to something bright and healthy.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

As I was rummaging through my fridge on the hunt for something to pair with the fennel, I spotted a bunch of redish-pink radishes and a box of earthy spring mix. In a bowl it all went.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

Since cherry season is creeping closer, I threw in a handful of extra sweet dried cherries for good measure.

What salad is complete without cheese? So, in went some blue cheese. The pungent, marbled cheese is the perfect contrast to pair with the sweet cherries.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

I wanted to highlight the cherries and add some balance to the salad since, in its current state, it’s full of bite-y, bitter greens and zippy radishes. After a careful glance inside my fridge, I spotted a bottle of black cherry juice squeezed between a jar of pickles and cranberry juice.

After a few turns of the whisk, cherry-balsamic vinaigrette was born.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

The sweet and tangy vinaigrette eases the bite of the bitter greens and pungent fennel.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette | www.themessybakerblog.com

Grab your salad bowl and prepare to overload on fresh greens.

Fennel & Radish Salad with Cherry Vinaigrette

Fresh spring greens tossed with vibrant radishes and crisp fennel.

Yield: 1 large salad

Total Time: 10 minutes

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 0 minutes

Ingredients:

Salad

10 ounces fresh greens (your choice)

1 small bulb fennel, cored and sliced thin

1/4 cup fennel fronds, roughly chopped

half cucumber, sliced thin

4 radishes, thinly sliced

1/3 cup blue cheese crumbles

1/2 cup dried cherries

1/3 cup toasted pecans

Cherry-Balsamic Vinaigrette

1/4 cup cherry juice

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon grainy mustard

1/2 teaspoon honey

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

In a large bowl, toss together salad ingredients.

In a small bowl, whisk together cherry juice, balsamic vinegar, dijon and grainy mustard, garlic, and honey.

Slowly whisk in the olive oil until throughly combined. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Toss the salad with as little or as much dressing as you like right before serving.

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