Apple, Fennel & Pomegranate Salad needs to be part of any bountiful festive table. Invariably pretty, the salad also boasts lots of crunch – necessary in any good salad, thanks to the apples, celery & fennel, all sliced wafter thin. Creamy goat cheese, tart & chewy dried cranberries & watercress all drizzled in apple mustard vinaigrette are added. Then the crowning glory – ruby-like pomegranate arils, sprinkled on top. Perfect!
Are you a fennel lover? Cooking enhances its licorice-like flavor but when served raw, fennel is more subdued. Make sure the slices are wispy thin. I use a mandoline for this. A food processor would suffice although produce somewhat clunkier slices. A mandoline is a must in any kitchen.
I added two apple varieties for color & flavor. Green apple lends tartness & the red apple: sweetness & color. Just toss the slices in some lemon juice to keep them looking fresh.
I always find the retrieval of the seeds from the white, fleshy caves in pomegranates to be rather satisfying. Don’t you? I equate it to pulling a whole piece of meat from a crab leg.
Arugula (rocket) would be a suitable stand-in for watercress. Watercress is an underutilized green. You don’t always see it in stores but it’s reportedly easy to grow so I thought I’d give it a crack. Apart from being good for you, it’s very pretty & because of this makes a welcome addition in salads.
I first shared this beautiful salad on my now obsolete The Fresh Aussie blog. It’s so perfect for around the festive season I just had to share it again on this, my new site – Fresh Hunger. Not an everyday salad but definitely one that will make an impression for your guests. Until next time…cheers, Lovoni
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- 1 large pomegranate
- 1 large fennel bulb
- 1 large green apple
- 1 large red apple
- 4 celery stalks, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 4 oz (113g) soft, creamy goat cheese (or feta cheese), crumbled
- 2 cups watercress sprigs
- fennel tops & celery leaves to garnish, optional
- APPLE MUSTARD VINAIGRETTE
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 2 teaspoons grainy (seed) mustard
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- To make the apple mustard vinaigrette: Place all ingredients in a jar with a screw-top lid. Shake well to combine.
- To remove seeds from pomegranate: Cut pomegranate in quarters, push the skin side like you would a mango that you’d segmented, this allows the seeds to release. Use your fingers to get in and remove the seeds, peeling back any white flesh. Let the seeds fall into a small bowl. You’ll get about 1 cup of seeds from a large pomegranate. Set seeds aside in fridge.
- Trim base of fennel & the tops. Slice fennel thinly – I use a mandoline to get the slices nice & thin.
- Slice apples thinly & place in bowl of water with a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar to prevent apple browning.
- To assemble salad, arrange sliced fennel, celery, apple slices, cranberries & goat cheese on a platter; top with watercress. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds over salad & drizzle with dressing. Garnish with fennel tops & celery leaves.