A Winter of Salads – Fennel & Pomegranate

After my failure to post a Salad Days recipe in July I am trying to makes amends this month, although how successful I’ve been depends on how you view fennel.  Now I know fennel isn’t actually a leaf but as this salad also contains herbs and the fennel provides a cool, crisp base for the salad, just as a salad leaf would, so I thought I could get away with it.  Regardless though I love fennel and whilst I enjoy it cooked I do generally prefer it raw in salads.  I also love pomegranate and fortunately it is in season here at the same time as fennel so makes for a great seasonal combination.

Fennel & Pomegranate Salad

  • 1 fennel bulb – finely sliced
  • 1 small red onion – finely sliced
  • 1 small bunch soft herbs – eg parsley, coriander – finely chopped
  • Seeds from 1 pomegranate
  • 1 cucumber – finely sliced
  • 100g feta crumbled (optional)


  • 1/2 tsp pomegranate molasses
  • 1tblspn lemon juice
  • 3 tblspns extra virgin olive oil
  • salt & pepper

Place salad ingredients onto a serving dish.  Combine the dressing ingredients and pour over salad.  Serve.

Aside from this post being a part of the Vegplotting Salad Days series, I am also sharing it as part of The Gardener of Eden’s Thursday Kitchen Cupboard , and Greenish Thumb’s Garden to Table.

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30 Responses to A Winter of Salads – Fennel & Pomegranate

  1. I think you’ve mastered it perfectly well, Liz! Combination of such great flavor as fennel and pomegranate is wonderful. I will make this salad when pomegranates are in season here. Thanks for sharing the recipe. 🙂

  2. Oh, this sounds divine! I am planting fennel for the first time this year, and I have planted a pomegranate seed too. We’ll see if I can get it to become a tree. 🙂

    • Liz says:

      I bought a pomegranate tree and I think I forgot to water it and it lost all its leaves. I’m waiting to see if that was it being deciduous or whether I’ve killed it. unfortunately I think it was the latter but the former is still a possibility.

  3. kitsapFG says:

    The combination sounds exotic and lovely! I like a bit of sweet in my salad (like strawed ripe strawberries) particularly if I have another item with an undertone of bitter to it (like spinach or racddichio etc). The flavor contrasts is heavenly when paired that way.

  4. Mark Willis says:

    I have recently discovered a taste for eating Fennel, though my attempts in the past to grow it all met with failure. It bolted before it bulbed-up. I think it needs moister soil than mine.

  5. Mel says:

    Fennel is my favourite in salads, and this looks like it could be the sort of big flavour hit that I have been trying for in my salads of late. I will give this one a go.

  6. Sarah says:

    This sounds so good! I don’t often use fennel because it usually brings complaints from the rest of the family – but I don’t think anyone could grumble about your great combination of flavours in this salad.

    • Liz says:

      My kids eat it…well my (almost) 6 year old eats it, my 2 year old picks out he feta & pomegranate and eats them but then I can’t think of any dish he actually eats all of…

  7. Jodie says:

    Hi Liz,
    Sounds delicious. I am curious to know about growing fennel- how easy it is to achieve something the size of what you would say pay $1-$2 for?

    • Liz says:

      Um er um, I guess this is the point I come clean and tell you I bought the fennel at the Coburg outpost of the Wesfarmers empire….I was thinking of lying and pretending I grew it or at the very least bought it at a farmers market but no… One of the reasons I haven’t grown it before is that I understand that it takes quite a long time and most of that growing time is when I need all the growing space I’ve got for other things. Having said that I would like to try it this year. Oh and I did grow the herbs…honest….

      • I can probably help here, I just looked back at my blog archive and saw that I planted fennel in late Feb which was at the “baby” size that you see in shops by early June, and is only now getting to the large bulb size you see sold for $1-2. So in terms of a time/cost ratio you really wouldn’t bother, but in terms of taste, I have been slowly harvesting it from a patch of about 1sqm for the last 3 months and it is delicious, much stronger and sweeter than the shop bought ones.

        Love the salad Liz, it looks delicious, and importantly for this dreary time of year it looks like Spring!

  8. Must admit fennel isn’t a taste I like. I guess you could substitue celery.

    • Liz says:

      It would work really well with celery I think. Actually now that you’ve suggested it I really want to try that…immediately which may be difficult as its 10 o’clock at time, I’m 20km from the closest shop which shut at 9pm anyway and I have no pomegranates.

  9. VP says:

    Fennel definitely counts! I’ve just sown some bulb fennel this week for a late season crop and you can use the thinnings and leaves in salads too (well, that’s what I do!)

    I shall reserve a couple of November’s bulbs for when the pomegranates hit the shops to try this recipe out 🙂

    Thanks for a lovely idea for this month’s Salad Days!

    • Liz says:

      Do you know I cheated a bit and I have never grown fennel. I did grow the herbs etc in the salad but not the fennel. I think this may be the year I attempt it though.

  10. Jody says:

    how exotic and lovely. I really enjoy the flavor and smell of fennel, but have never used it. This would be a perfect introduction. Especially because I also love feta!

    • Liz says:

      I would really recommend it as an introduction. Although you do get the lovely fennel flavour I don’t find it as strong when raw as it is when cooked.

  11. Norma Chang says:

    A very unique and delightful combo. I do prefer my fennel cooked though.

  12. Louise says:

    Yum, yum, yum. I love fennel and pomegranate . Thanks so much for this post. I just posted about a fennel salad too … but yours is so much more interesting than mine!

    And growing fennel is easy. Now is a good time to put seeds in.

  13. Nina says:

    So much talk of fennel on a couple of blogs, lately! I think I’ll go buy one soon and give it another try and see if I might like it better this time. I like pomegranate and I love feta so I might just enjoy this. 🙂

    • Liz says:

      I think its worth trying it raw even if you don’t like it cooked. If you’ve tried it raw and not liked it – well I did read somewhere that you have a to give kids foods 7 times before you really know they don’t like something – I wonder if its the same for adults…

  14. Robin says:

    Wonderful recipe! “The Italian” would love this salad. I don’t grow fennel since I really don’t like it. I do think this recipe would be wonderful with celery like Sue suggested.

    • Liz says:

      I do think celery would work brilliantly and I’m desperate to try it now. I have the celery but pomegranates are hard to some by at the moment.

  15. Gorgeously fresh use of fennel, you do have a way with salads! We’ve a secondary crop of them coming up from roots left in the ground, and can’t wait for them to get big enough to harvest and make this.

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