Shaved Fennel and Avocado Salad
with Macadamia Nuts, Mache and Grapefruit
2 medium fennel heads
2 ripe Haas avocados
2 Ruby Red grapefruits, sectioned
½ cup macadamia nuts, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons fennel fronds, chopped
½ shallot, minced
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
Juice and zest of 1 orange
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 cup olive oil
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
2 cups mache, roots removed
Salt and white pepper to taste
Combine the water and sugar in a sauce pan and bring to a boil stirring occasionally with a whisk. Remove from heat and refrigerate until cold (simple syrup).
Peel the skins off the grapefruit and remove the sections, cutting in between the pith. Place the sections in a bowl and cover with the simple syrup. Refrigerate for use later.
In a bowl, combine the juice and zests of the orange and lemon with the shallot and rice wine vinegar; whisk to combine. Season to taste with a little salt and white pepper; refrigerate for use later.
Using a French or Japanese mandolin, shave the fennel paper thin (about 1/16 of an inch thick) and place in a bowl. Add some of the vinaigrette and the chopped fennel fronds, season with a little salt and white pepper and toss to coat. Cut the avocados in half and remove the seed. Using a spoon remove the avocado halves from the skin and place one half on each plate. Place the dressed fennel on top of the avocado halves. Drain the grapefruit sections and distribute among the plates. Sprinkle the macadamia nuts onto the plates. Divide the mache between the plates and drizzle any remaining vinaigrette on the mache.