Monday, August 6, 2012

Fresh celery and fennel are two vegetables in Turkey that are quite difficult to find.

So imagine my surprise, when I found both these items at a pazar stall two weeks ago! And the sign said bahçede (from the garden).

Since we’re housesitting for a friend near the Emirgan Korusu, we’ve been shopping at a different Saturday pazar located at the Istinye Dereçi bus stop. The pazar is quite large, but quiet as it’s tucked back in a small corner of the Istinye neighborhood in Istanbul.

Well, I had to buy the fresh celery and 1 bulb of fennel just because I could. Although, I wasn’t sure what I’d do with the veggies yet. (Sometimes you can find celery at the larger grocery stores as well as fennel at Macro Center in Istanbul.)

This is what fresh celery (kereviz) looks like in Turkey.
I save the leaves in a plastic bag, freeze them, and use them
 later to make stocks.
Over the weekend, we planned to grill outside with our friends. So I decided to make the chicken with a jerk marinade and use the fresh celery and fennel in a salad.

Once I thinly sliced the celery stalks and fennel bulb, I only had enough for 2 cups. When I rinsed off the celery and fennel together, they smelled like a bowlful of Turkish raki!

Then, I julienned two green apples and chopped up some of the fennel fronds and celery leaves. I made a quick vinaigrette. And voilà you have a sassy summer salad!

The salad perfectly complemented the somewhat spicy chicken breasts. I was content!

Of course, when we back to the pazar this Saturday, the same stall did NOT have any fresh fennel. Maalesef!

Well, if you live some place where you can readily get fresh celery and fennel, I’m sure you will enjoy this salad.

Afiyet olsun!

How to get to the pazar:
Istanbul IETT bus lines numbers 22 and 29S end at the Istinye Dereçi bus stop.
You can see the IETT map here.
Very green and fresh! Taze Kereviz, Rezene Salatası/Fresh Celery, Fennel Salad ready to serve.

Taze Kereviz, Rezene Salatası/Fresh Celery, Fennel Salad

1            small            fennel bulb, sliced thinly
1             head            Turkish celery stalks, sliced thinly at an angle
2            ea.                green apples, julienned into strips
½            c.                 celery leaves, roughly chopped
2            T.                 fennel fronds, finely chopped
3            T.                 olive oil
2            T.                 apple vinegar
¼            tsp.              sugar
To taste                      salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, apple vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper.

Add the vegetables and the apple. Toss to coat.

Season to taste again with salt and pepper.

NOTE: only dress the salad right before you are ready to eat or it can get soggy. I prepped my celery and fennel the day before and stored in airtight container in the refrigerator. Then, all I had to do was julienne the apples and toss the vinaigrette together.

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jaz@octoberfarm said...

hi joy! that looks wonderful and i will try it soon. i found and tasted my first pomegranate molasses this morning. wow oh woweeeee!!!! how did i ever live without this stuff???

Joy said...

@Joyce, enjoy! I use the pomegranate molasses all the time on salads, grilled lamb. It's lovely!

Joy said...

@Joyce, enjoy! I use the pomegranate molasses all the time on salads, grilled lamb. It's lovely!

Ozlem's Turkish Table said...

Lovely, refreshing salad Joy, love fennel:)
look forward to cooking together at my class tonite! :)

Joy said...

@Ozlem, you can probably find fennel a lot easier than I can. It's a great salad if you do. Also, had a wonderful time at your cooking class last night. Thanks!