By: Chloë Sibley Writer & Journalist | Specialist Food & Arts


Also known as Finuccio, Florence Fennel is favoured by many chefs in Italian cooking. Fennel is a versatile herb grown best in the summer months, making a conveniently delectable addition to summer salads. Join Michelin star chef Pietro Cacciatori in the kitchen with his recipe for Fennel and Orange Salad, bringing the flavours of Finuccio with citrus fruits. 

This refreshing salad is perfect for summer, with the base of the dressing soaked in orange juice. The fresh citrus zest is warmed with toasted pine nuts, creating a melody of balancing flavours. The fennel's flavours are reminiscent of a delicately mild version of liquorice, spiked with salt to enhance the taste. A mixture of Extra-virgin olive oil and apple cider vinegar is drizzled over the remaining ingredients for a flavour-packed salad. We recommend this dish as an upgrade from ordinary lunches. 

This zesty dish and more of our favourite Italian recipes can be explored with chef Pietro Cacciatori from any of our villas in Tuscany. Whether you choose to partake in a hands-on cooking class or sit back, relax and let our staff look after you and your loved ones, our award-winning Concierge Team is here to make it happen for you.



Fennel and Orange Salad

Serves 4 - Cook in 30 minutes

Ingredients

- 3 fennel bulbs
- 2 oranges
- 50g pine nuts
- 20g raisins
- 10g pumpkin seeds
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Apple cider vinegar
- Salt

Preparation

Step 1

Begin by juicing one orange and leave the raisins to soak in the orange juice for approximately 10-15 minutes. Peel and thinly slice the remaining orange, making sure to eliminate the bitter white parts of the peel.

Step 2

Wash and dry the fennel, and proceed to remove the stalks and leaves (fronds) and any hard or woody pieces. Using a mandolin, shave the bulb of the fennel and place in a bowl of ice water – this will help us retain the crispness and crunch of the raw fennel. Place the pine nuts in a frying pan on medium heat and toast evenly approximately between 5-10 minutes. Place aside to cool.

Step 3

Drain the raisins, making sure to preserve the orange juice. In a kitchen beaker (or bowl with high sides), add orange juice, apple cider vinegar, Extra-virgin olive oil and salt. Blend the mix with an electric mixer or immersion blender. Begin to assemble the salad: drain and place the fennel to a large bowl with the raisins. Add the sliced oranges, dress with the emulsion and add the toasted pine nuts. For that final crunch, add the pumpkin seeds and mix well. Buon Appetito!


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