Is thanks to my vegetarian friends that I discover new and interesting ways of using vegetables. This is the perfect salad to make you feel healthy and refreshed. Great as a starter, side dish or lunch you could also add other vegetables such as cucumber, asparagus, radish, mange tout, broad beans or leaves like baby spinach and radicchio.
A simple dressing of olive oil, lemon juice and salt is all thats needed to bring the flavours together and keep the vegetables crunchy, but you can experiment adding vinegars or other condiments to suit your palette.
Refreshing Vegetable Salad
2 sticks celery
1 medium carrot
1 medium fennel bulb, plus tops
1 small beetroot
1 small courgette
Oil for drizzling
Zest of 1/2 lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1. Using a mandolin or vegetable peeler, slice as thin as possible to make ribbons of the celery, carrot, courgette. If the courgette pieces are very wide you can slice in half lengthways so they balance with the rest of the vegetables.
2. If using a mandolin, slice the fennel to the same thinness of the other vegetables, otherwise you will need to use a knife. Cut the fennel bulb in half and with the cut side facing down, slice front to back. Reserve the tops for garnish.
3. Using a vegetable peeler remove skins from the beetroot and turnip, and in a circular motion grate around the vegetable making long snake-like stands. When done cut these into lengths the same size as the carrot.
4. Place all ingredients into a large bowl, except the beetroot and mix together gently. Add the olive oil, zest, lemon juice, salt and mix again, taste, and adjust if needed.. Finally add the beetroot pieces by picking up bits of the salad and weaving it through. This will minimise the beetroot staining the other vegetables with colour, which looks nicer for serving. Finish by garnishing with the fennel tops.