Deliciously refreshing, you’ll love this Fennel Orange Salad with Spicy Honey Bacon. It’s the perfect accompaniment to heavy winter meals, but it’s so satisfying, it’s a fantastic meal on its own!
Some time smack dab in the middle of winter, I find myself craving the lighter meals of summer. A nice salad full of crispy vegetables, bright dressings, and fresh flavors. I love all the roasts and stews, but I just need a nice crisp bite to balance the richness.
This Fennel Orange Salad with Spicy Honey Bacon is light and refreshing with a little sweet heat. The type of heat that hits you in the back of the throat and lingers for a bit. You know, the type of heat that leaves you wondering whether or not it really is spicy. Then as soon as you start to think that it may be a lot spicy, the cool crunchy fennel and juicy orange chime in and tell you to take another bite.
Yep. It’s that type of heat that makes every bite of this Fennel Orange Salad with Spicy Honey Bacon perfectly balanced hitting on so many flavor notes. Salty bacon, sweet honey, crunchy fennel, and juicy orange with just a hint of lingering heat.
Fennel, The Mysterious Bulb
I find most people don’t know if they like fennel or how to use it if they do.
I guess that’s why it’s always available at my local farm stand. Everyone else just passes the mysterious bulb on by. Either too scared to try it or too intimidated to cook with it.
I’m here to show you how easy it is to use this piquant, crunchy, flavor-packed root vegetable. With sweet anise flavor, fennel reminds me of what would happen if licorice and dill made a baby. A crisp, crunchy veggie baby.
Fresh fennel is in season and readily available from fall into spring. I like to stock up when I see it. Like potatoes, onions, or cabbage, fennel keeps for a good amount of time if kept in a cool, dark place.
To use it fresh, simply cut the base and stalk off of the bulb. Remove any spent outer layers, cut it in half, and slice. Slice thinly into crescents for salads or pasta sauce, cut into chunks for stir fries and roasting, or slice into long sticks for adding to your fresh veggie platters.
- 3 medium navel oranges, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced, about 2 cups
- 4 slices thick cut bacon, cooked and crumbled, about ½ cup
- 2 tablespoons honey
- ¼ small jalapeño pepper, 1 tablespoon sliced
- ¼ cup chopped fresh herbed fennel fronds (use chives, basil, cilantro, or parsley, minced)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, warm honey until smooth and shiny, about 3 minutes.
- Remove from heat, stir in sliced jalapeño pepper, and cool. Squeeze about 2 tablespoons orange juice from the cut orange ends into the cooled jalapeño honey. Stir until smooth. Add crumbled bacon and fennel slices. Season to taste with salt.
- Arrange orange slices on platter, top with the honey bacon fennel mixture. Sprinkle with fresh herbs and fresh ground pepper to taste.
- Serve and enjoy!
Home Chef Tip: Save extra fennel to throw in stir fries or roast with other root vegetables. Or store sliced fennel frozen in freezer bags for up to 8 months.
We hope you love this Fennel Orange Salad with Spicy Honey Bacson from SoFabFood Home Chef, Tristin from One Armed Mama, as much as we do. Enjoy it as is or make it a meal by serving over a bed of spinach or arugula and topping with shrimp, fish, poultry, or pork. If you enjoyed this delightful recipe, be sure to stop by our Salad Section to find more like it. For daily recipe inspiration, like us on Facebook and follow us on Pinterest. Enjoy!