Grilled Tomato, Onion and Fennel Salad

Raphael Lunetta's grilled salad is inspired by vegetables his aunt would prepare at her home in Collioure, France. The fennel and onion are cooked on the grill so they char slightly before braising in foil with the tomatoes and lemon vinaigrette.

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  • Servings: 4

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  • 1 large fennel bulb—halved, trimmed, cored and cut lengthwise into 8 wedges
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 large sweet onion, such as Maui or Vidalia, sliced 1/2 inch thick
  • 4 large red or yellow tomatoes or a mixture, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped basil, preferably Thai
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped mint

How to make this recipe

  1. Light a grill or heat a lightly oiled grill pan. In a bowl, toss the fennel wedges with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Brush the onion slices on both sides with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the fennel and onion over a medium-hot fire for about 4 minutes per side, or until lightly charred and just tender. Alternatively, cook the fennel and onion in the grill pan over moderate heat for about 5 minutes per side.

  2. Lay two 2-by-3-foot pieces of heavy-duty foil on top of each other and put the tomatoes in the center. Add the grilled fennel and onion slices and season the vegetables with salt and pepper.

  3. In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, lemon juice, garlic and mustard and blend in the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Spoon the dressing over the vegetables, then seal the foil package.

  4. Set the vegetable package over a medium-hot fire and grill for 5 to 7 minutes, or until bubbling inside. Alternatively, set the package in the grill pan and cook over moderate heat for 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand for 3 minutes. Carefully open the foil and sprinkle the vegetables with the basil and mint. Serve hot or warm.

Contributed By Published December 1999

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