Julienned butternut and shaved fennel salad

October 25, 2010
0 Ratings
  • Serves 4-6 depending on how much turkey was eaten
Author Notes

Sometimes you just need something cleansing at the Thanksgiving table. This is really two cleansing salads in one. The raw butternut squash is julienned (I needed to get my money’s worth out of the gadget I bought to pull off dymnyno’s zuccaghetti) and dressed with some sweet and spicy ingredients commonly paired with it. The shaved fennel gets dressed with the winter trio of orange juice, honey and cumin. Since you marinate the veggies in their respective sauces for about 30 minutes before serving, you can serve the main course while the squash and fennel are becoming one with their dressing, and then just compose this salad to serve as a palate cleanser before you roll out the pies. —cheese1227

What You'll Need
  • Spicy raw butternut salad
  • 1 teaspoon Vietnamese garlic chili sauce
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp light vegetable oil
  • The straight neck from a sizable butternut squash, peeled and cut in half, julienned using wither a julienne peeler or the appropriate fitting on you mandolin
  • Marinated shaved fennel
  • Juice of half an orange (about 1/4 cup)
  • 2 teaspoon honey
  • 3 tablespoons of good olive oil.
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, dry toasted and ground
  • kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • Two whole fennel bulbs (safe the fronds for garnish), halved, cored and shaved on a mandolin
  • Pomegranate seeds, optional garnish
  1. Prepare each dressing separately in two medium sized bowls.
  2. Approximately 30 minutes before you want to serve the salad, put the raw julienned squash into its dressing, tossing to coat, and put the fennel into its dressing, also tossing to coat.
  3. When it’s time to plate the salad (you can do this on individual plates or on a platter for family-style service), first spread the shaved fennel in one layer on the plates/platter. Then pile the julienned squash on top of it. Sprinkle with fennel fronds and (optional) pomegranate seeds.
  4. Serve immediately.
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  • Sagegreen
  • TheWimpyVegetarian
  • lastnightsdinner
  • Midge
  • dymnyno
I am an excellent eater (I have been all my life). I’m a pretty good cook (Ask my kids!). And my passable writing improves with alcohol (whether it's the writer or the reader that needs to drink varies by sentence.). I just published my first cookbook, Green Plate Special, which focuses on delicious recipes that help every day cooks eat more sustainably.

19 Reviews

Sagegreen October 30, 2010
Oh, I just noticed this one! Love the health appeal.
cheese1227 October 30, 2010
Well, we can kid ourselves that we might possibly, maybe consider something healthy on Thanksgiving.
TheWimpyVegetarian October 29, 2010
I love the sound and look of this one, and how nice to have something light and healthy! I was thinking even a little lime juice with the raw butternut part of the salad.
cheese1227 October 30, 2010
Oh, yes. Lime juice would be a nice addition.
lastnightsdinner October 27, 2010
Ha! The OXO julienne peeler, I presume? I love that thing, and used mine on butternut squash last Thanksgiving for a recipe I was working on for Edible Rhody. Your salad looks great, love anything with fennel in it, and I'm wondering if you think lemon or Meyer lemon juice would work as a substitute for the OJ? (I'm allergic to oranges and their juice.)
cheese1227 October 28, 2010
Hmmm, good question. I don't think I've had lemon and fennel together. Have you? You could just use a vinegar for the acid and bump up the honey a little.
Midge October 27, 2010
This sounds so perfect for Thanksgiving. Must now invest in a julienne gadget.
cheese1227 October 27, 2010
The gadget is great. But the julienne fitting on the mandolin works really well too.
cbear1984 October 26, 2010
This looks great! Totally saved.
cheese1227 October 27, 2010
Thanks. I had extra squash and fennel after testing this so now I have fennel and squash soup!
dymnyno October 26, 2010
Great recipe...great idea!! I love, love that you have found yet another use for the julienne instrument!! This sounds delicious...thanks for another ingenious and creative recipe.
cheese1227 October 27, 2010
No, THNAK YOU! I have made your recipe and variations of it at least 25 times since you posted it, always to much acclaim!
aargersi October 26, 2010
Beautiful - love the flavors and the idea of something raw and refreshing. I need to practice with my julienne thing (I got one after Dymnamo's zucaghetti too) but mine doesn't come out quite so pretty ....
cheese1227 October 26, 2010
Bnut squash takes a bit more effort than zucchini for sure. I have a very thick (like 2-inch thick) wooden cutting board and I put neck (that I've cut in half) haning just a bit off the edge of the board and draw the peeler down. Having that extra bit at the end lets me get the long pieces without totally killing my knuckles.
Table9 October 25, 2010
So creative! Cannot wait to try...is this a self-developed recipe?
cheese1227 October 25, 2010
I've had the fennel/orange combo many times in Italy. But I've never had raw butternut before. I tried blanching it for like 10 seconds to soften it a bit, but I really preferred the crunch of it raw.
Table9 October 27, 2010
Me too. I love vegetables raw that you would not normally think to eat raw...I really enjoy a good shaved raw zuchinni salad w/ a great olive oil and even more white wine vinegar mix.
Jennifer A. October 25, 2010
cheese1227 October 25, 2010
Thanks! All of the ideas for cooked bnut squash seemed to be exhausted so I went for the cold/raw extreme.