Creating memories in the kitchen...One meal at a time.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Caramelized Pancetta and Fennel Salad

This was one of the first Giada De Laurentiis recipes I made. This salad is right up there on my top ten list. It is simple to make and has minimal ingredients. The pancetta and fennel are combined with a citrusy dressing to make a fabulous sweet& salty combination that you'll love. If you can't find or don't feel like buying pancetta you can always substitute bacon. This dressing is a great light dressing that I use often, not just on this salad.

Caramelized Pancetta and Fennel Salad

1 bulb fennel, halved and cut into 1/2-inch wedges (in produce isle)
5 slices pancetta (thick cut works best) or bacon
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 ounces (about 6 to 7 cups) mixed salad greens
Red Wine Vinaigrette, recipe follows

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, toss together fennel, pancetta, garlic, brown sugar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Place the ingredients on the baking sheet in a single layer. Cook until the pancetta is crisp and the fennel is caramelized, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, place the salad greens, crumbled pancetta, and caramelized fennel. Toss the salad with the Red Wine Vinaigrette and serve immediately.

Red Wine Vinaigrette:

2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Mix the vinegar, lemon juice, honey, salt, and pepper in a blender. With the machine running gradually blend in the oil. Season the vinaigrette, to taste, with more salt and pepper, if desired.

Posted by: Sallie
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