There was simply too much celery in my vegetable bin. Other than okra, and lima beans, both of which I simply can't abide, celery may be the only vegetable I could happily live without.
But after Thanksgiving I had nearly two bunches left, and it was time to find a novel way to consume it. Slicing it super-thin on the mandoline was a good start, as was pairing it with shaved fennel, which has a distracting enough flavor to successfully mask the celery's celeriness. Cucumbers seemed a logical next step, given their crunch and proximity on the color wheel, and then all hell broke loose and I started tossing in green fruit.
Grapes? In. Granny Smith apples? Sure. At this point I could hardly even see the celery with all the chaos in the bowl, and that, I suppose, was largely the point.
Then I grabbed the pomegranate.
Opting, I guess, for contrast over congruence, I somehow ended up with a Christmas-colored salad.
To make up for it, I, a Jewish girl with no business offering Christmas recipes, will post a noodle kugel recipe in the coming days.
(And hurry. There's still time to add a cookie to the swap. )
Recipe for Crunchy Christmas Salad with Fennel, Celery, and Fruit
Supremely light and crunchy, this salad melds a disparate set of ingredients into a cohesive, refreshing whole. It makes an ideal partner for a heavier meal, or whenever you want to feel especially virtuous.
1/2 fennel bulb
1 stalk celery
1/2 English cucumber
1/2 Granny Smith apple, cored
6 to 8 green grapes, halved
1/4 cup pomegranate seeds
Juice of 1/2 Meyer lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
Cut a v-shape in the fennel bulb and discard the hard core. Slice thinly on a mandoline (or use a sharp knife) and toss into a serving bowl. Slice the celery, cucumber, and apple thinly as well, and add to the fennel. Toss in the grapes and pomegranate seeds.
Whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper, and pour over the salad. Toss to coat.