Recipe by COOKGIRl
"When we get there, we'll order up a big salad in a wooden bowl, with basil and spinach and fennel and cilantro and radicchio, and we'll have it with olive oil and vinegar and pepper and garlic."- Book of Guys by Garrison Keillor, Chapter 6, page 138. A funny passage among many funny passages found in Keillor's book published in 1993. Thus begins my odyssey to bring this salad to life- as in life imitating art. Use the freshest ingredients you can find and elaborate on this recipe to your heart's content. Wouldn't fresh parmesan be good in this? Red onion?
Top Review by the_amateur
I love this salad. I have eaten it almost everyday since I found this recipe last week. Sometimes I add more basil, sometimes more cilantro...what a delightful mix of fresh flavours. The only problem is I am drinking alot more Pinot, it goes beautifully with the salad. Thanks so much for the recipe!
- 1 cup fresh basil leaf, torn up
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
- 2⁄3 cup fennel bulb, diced, uncooked, to taste (Florence fennel also known as finocchio)
- 1⁄2 cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
- 1 cup radicchio, chopped
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar or 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
- fresh ground black pepper
- 1 garlic clove, cut in half first then later minced
- 1 tablespoon fennel leaves, for seasoning
- fresh imported parmesan cheese (read NOTE below) (optional)
- lemon wedge (to garnish)
Directions See How It's Made
- Begin by cutting the garlic clove in half and taking one half and rubbing along the inside of serving bowl.
- Toss the basil leaves, baby spinach leaves, diced fennel bulbs, cilantro leaves and radicchio together lightly in a salad bowl.
- Mince the two garlic halves, adding to the salad along with the olive oil, white wine vinegar, fennel fronds and Parmesan if using. Toss lightly.
- Serve salad with lemon wedges, a good bottle of wine and of course crusty Italian bread. Don't forget the freshly ground black pepper for the final touch!
- NOTE: *Experiment with any fresh imported Italian cheese of your choice, shaved.