Fennel, Avocado, Blood Orange with Sesame Dressing

This recipe is perfect for meatless Monday. I saw the fennel bulb at the market but never knew what to make from it until I opened up Michael Smith’s cookbook and now I’m hooked.

At the beginning of my introduction to fennel bulb, I used his cookbook as my guidance to make salad which was very simple dressing, lemon, honey and olive oil with crushed black peppers and salt. This time I was inspired by goma-ae (Japanese spinach salad) that I often have at the Japanese restaurants in town. So I looked into Nami’s blog, my Japanese foodie friend where always posts simple Japanese recipes that look so fabulous.

Goma-ae is a Japanese spinach salad with sesame dressing. I slightly changed her recipe by omitting sake and mirin. I came up by adding key lime and honey.

Without even realizing that many recipes on the internet using the pair of fennel and orange blood, I came up this idea to marry between fennel and orange blood. After I typed this recipe, I googled and found many recipes with combination of both.

Since I’m not a big fan of heavy creamy salad dressing, this salad is light and very refreshing.

Fennel, Avocado, Pea Shoot and Orange Blood Salad with Sesame Dressing Recipe

1 fennel bulb, sliced thinly
1 blood orange, peeled and take the segments
pea shoots as many as you like
1 avocado, halved, pitted and sliced

Sesame Dressing:
3 tablespoons roasted white sesame seeds
1 ½tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon water
3 key limes, zested and juiced

Fennel Bulb

Put the roasted sesame seeds in a mortar and grind them with a pestle (while it’s hot). If you don’t have a Japanese grinder or mortar and pestle, any other spice grinder will do.

Add honey, soy sauce, key lime juice, and water. Mix all together and set aside.

Put fennel slices, pea shoots, blood orange segments, avocado slices into a large salad bowl. Add sesame dressing. Toss well and serve..


  1. Hi Pepy! Thank you for linking back to my Spinach Gomaae recipe! I love how you came up with the sesame dressing – so refreshing and delicious. I always have fennel bulb in winter to make soups and stews but I will use it for salad next time!

    • I have been making your gomaae dressing with many different veggies already before I posted this. Thanks Nami!


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