This easy side salad with avocado, cucumber, radishes and fennel is the ultimate side salad and the lemon dressing is easy and delicious.
This side salad has become my go-to pretty much every day of the week. It’s featured alongside juicy lemon herb roast chicken, as part of a help-yourself dinner party with charcuterie and cheese platters and as a healthy side dish to mayo-grilled steak.
I know fennel isn’t something most people love and to be honest, I’m in that camp too. I’m not too crazy about its anise-flavor (even though I do like licorice) but I have a found a way to mellow that flavor and make fennel absolutely delicious. By marinating the thinly sliced fennel in fresh lemon, olive oil, salt and pepper beforehand, the fennel loses its strong flavor and instead adds gentle sweetness and a whole lot of crunch to this salad.
I marinate the fennel and radishes together and their marinade also becomes the dressing. The rest of the salad is made up of baby lettuce (I used baby butter lettuce, rocket/arugula and baby spinach), sliced cucumber and avocado. I also crumbled in some feta cheese but if you’d prefer to keep this salad vegan, you can definitely leave it out.
What is a side salad?
A side salad is usually a simple green salad (made with a variety of lettuce/leafy greens, cucumber, tomato and sometimes onion) but can be any salad served with a main as a side dish.
What do you put in a salad?
Salads are incredibly versatile and are a great way to use up fresh vegetables. Any leafy green/lettuce can work as a base and can be topped with everything from simple cucumber and tomato to thinly sliced carrots, peppers, sugar snap peas, radishes, fennel, celery, baby corn, onion (and green onion), green beans and avocado. Feta cheese, shavings of Parmesan or goat’s cheese are all excellent additions to a salad. You can also add berries, pomegranate or sliced stone fruit like plums and peaches to salads.
What to serve with salad
- Easy lemon herb roast chicken
- Mayonnaise grilled rosemary garlic steak
- Crispy chicken thighs on cheesy broccoli rice
- Corn flake-crusted chicken strips with honey-mustard dipping sauce
Easy side salad with lemon dressing
- 2 fennel bulbs finely sliced
- 150g 5oz radishes finely sliced
- 200 g/7oz salad leaves of your choice
- 1 English cucumber/ 8 baby cucumbers sliced
- 1-2 avocados sliced
- ½ cup feta cheese crumbled
for the dressing
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
- 1-2 tsp salt
- pepper to taste
- Whisk together all the dressing ingredients in a large bowl then add the sliced fennel and radish.
- Mix well and allow to marinate for at least 5 minutes but up to 30 minutes.
- Add all the remaining ingredients into the bowl then toss well and serve.