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Winter Salads
Fennel and Apple Salad
(Serves 4)

Apple, one of the favorite fruits of fall and winter, is loved for its juicy, crisp, sweet-tart flavor.  Fennel, though often available year-round, is at its best during its natural season from fall through early spring.  This salad brings these flavors together as a side salad or with added grilled chicken as a main course.


2 lemons
2 fennel bulbs, trimmed and fronds reserved
2 medium tart apples
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper
Seeds from half of a pomegranate
Slices of grilled chicken (optional)


Zest the lemons; put the zest in a small bowl.  Juice the lemons.  Add 2/3 of the juice to the bowl with the lemon zest.  Set the remaining juice aside.

Cut the fennel bulbs in half and remove the cores. Slice the fennel as thinly as you can (preferably with a mandoline.)  Put the sliced fennel in a large serving bowl.

Leave the skin on the apples; cut them in half and remove the cores.
Thinly slice the apples and put them in the bowl with the fennel.
Add the reserved lemon juice and gently toss.

Whisk the olive oil into the lemon zest and juice mixture.  Whisk in the mayonnaise and parsley; season with salt and pepper.  Pour the dressing over the fennel and apple slices; gently toss.  Coarsely chop some of the reserved fennel fronds.  If you are serving the salad with chicken, add it now.
Sprinkle the chopped fronds and pomegranate seeds over the salad and serve.
Kale Salad with Roasted Sweet Potato

(Serves 4)


1 large sweet potato
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Kale, about 4-5 leaves
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Olive oil

1 apple, cut into 1-inch slices
1 celery stalk, sliced
Dried cranberries
Candied walnuts
Blue cheese crumbles

2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar,
4 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tablespoon mustard
1/2 tablespoon honey or agave nectar
Salt and pepper


Preheat  the oven to 400 degrees F.  Peel the sweet potato and cut into 1-inch cubes. Place the cubes on a lined baking sheet, toss with some olive oil, salt and pepper.  Bake for 15 minutes, turn the cubes, and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until tender.  Transfer to a plate; set aside to cool.

Remove the stems and tough veins from the kale. Slice and chop the leaves; place in a bowl.  Add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and drizzle with olive oil.
Massage the juice and oil into the leaves and set aside.

Add the cooled sweet potatoes and the remaining ingredients to the kale.
Combine all the ingredients to make the dressing and add it to the salad; gently toss and serve.
Winter Salad with Roasted Beets and Orange Dressing
(Serves 6)


4 medium red beets
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon minced shallots
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
4 cups torn Boston lettuce
2 cups torn radicchio
1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with foil; set aside.

Remove the root and top stem on each beet.  Peel and cut the beets into halves and then into 1/2-inch thick wedges.  Place the beets on the prepared baking sheet.  Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Use your hands or a spatula to evenly distribute the oil on the beets.  Spread the beets out in a single layer and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, then the beets over on the baking sheet, and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until the beets are fork tender.  Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.  Leave at room temperature until serving time or refrigerate.

To make the dressing:
In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, shallots, and white wine vinegar.  Whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil; season with salt and pepper.

Combine the lettuce, radicchio and beets in a large salad bowl.
Drizzle the salad dressing over the salad and gently toss.
Sprinkle the blue cheese over the top and serve.
Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette

(Serves 6)


12 ounces Brussels sprouts
6 slices bacon or pancetta, cut into bite-size pieces
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
3 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper
6 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
1/3 cup coarsely chopped toasted walnuts
1/3 cup shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano


Trim the Brussels sprouts. Drop them through the food chute of a food processor fitted with the slicer blade.  Set aside.

Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the bacon and cook until brown and crisp.  Transfer the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate.  Reduce the heat to medium-low.  Add the vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, salt and pepper; stir to combine.  Add the Brussels sprouts and cook for 1 minute, stirring to coat with the dressing.  Cover the skillet and cook for 2 minutes.

In a serving bowl, combine the Brussels sprouts and Romaine.
Sprinkle with the bacon, walnuts, and shaved Parmigiano.  Serve.
Sicilian Orange and Fennel Salad

(Serves 6)


1/2 large red onion, thinly sliced
1 fennel bulb, trimmed, cut into thin slices; reserve some fronds for garnish
12 -15 Kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
4 oranges, peeled, cut into 1/4-inch slices or supremes (reserve juices)
Chopped Romaine or mixed greens (optional)

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper


Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a bowl. Add the onion, fennel, and olives; toss gently to coat.  Arrange some Romaine or mixed greens on a serving platter: top with the fennel mixture. Add the orange slices.
Drizzle reserved orange juice over top and serve.
Fennel and Apple Salad
Fennel and Apple Salad
Fennel and Apple Salad
Kale Salad with Roasted Sweet Potato
Winter Salad with Roasted Beets and Orange Dressing
Brussels Sprouts Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette
Sicilian Orange and Fennel Salad
These salad recipes feature vegetables and fruits are are more commonly available in the fall and winter months. 
Maple glazed walnuts are a nice addition to fruit salads as well as green salads.

2 cups walnuts
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/8 teaspoon salt

Preheat a dry skillet over mediujm-high heat. Add the walnuts, syrup, and salt.  Cook, stirring frequently, until the syrup is carmelized and the walnuts are toasted, about 3 minutes.  Spread the nuts on a piece of parchment paper and allow to cool.
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You can also make a delicious tomato soup with home grown tomatoes, fresh basil, garlic, and onion.
Neapolitan Christmas Salad
Stuffed Escarole
Italian Vegetable Stew
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