Fennel and Parmesan Salad

A salad is the perfect side dish for a summer meal, but I find myself doing the same ones over and over again.  I was recently introduced to fennel bulbs by my friend, Katie, who served one, cut into little cubes, as an appetizer. Fennel bulbs are surprisingly refreshing and crunchy with a hint of anise flavor.

This salad is a welcome change from the same old, same old summer salad scene.  It's a variation on coleslaw, but with more sophisticated flavors.  An inexpensive mandoline really helps with the slicing work.

Fennel and Parmesan Salad
Serves 4 

1 large fennel bulb
2 Tblsp olive oil
1 Tblsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 Tblsp fresh parsley, minced
2 Tblsp Parmesan cheese, grated or shaved

Wash and dry the fennel bulb, cut off any wispy leaves and slice thinly with the mandoline on the thinnest setting over a medium-sized bowl.

Add the olive oil, lemon juice, thyme, parsley and a dash of salt to the bowl and mix well to combine.  Let sit for 15-20 minutes to allow the flavors to mingle.  Top with the Parmesan cheese and serve.