Turnip Greens, Fennel, & Sweetgrass Salad

“She stared at the supper set before her: trout wrapped in bacon, salad of turnip greens and red fennel and sweetgrass, pease and onions and hot bread.” -A Clash of Kings

Catelyn's Salad - turnip greens, fennel, apple, lemongrass, walnuts, and raisins

Catelyn’s Salad – turnip greens, fennel, apple, lemongrass, walnuts, and raisins


Let me start by saying that I don’t especially care for fennel, or any of the flavors on the anise/licorice spectrum. However, when combined with the other ingredients in this salad, especially the apples, even I found it bright and refreshing. The crunch of combined fennel and apple, along with the walnuts, counters the sort of ordinary salad element of the turnip greens. Overall, it’s on the sweeter side, from the fruits and balsamic, and a really nice, unique salad for summer.

Catelyn’s Salad

Cook’s notes: as with all salads, feel free to meddle and mix to suit your tastes. Turnip greens can be difficult to find, so baby spinach is a good substitute.


  • 2 cups turnip greens
  • 1/2 cup fennel, julienned
  • 1 Tbs. lemongrass, sliced very thinly
  • 1/2 apple, julienned
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • fennel tops
  • 1/4 cup walnuts (candied is even better!)
  • balsamic for dressing
  • edible flowers (optional)

Combine the all ingredients except the dressing and edible flowers, and toss to combine. Drizzle with balsamic, and sprinkle with flowers, if using. Enjoy!

Salad of turnip greens, fennel, apple, lemongrass, walnuts, and raisins

Salad of turnip greens, fennel, apple, lemongrass, walnuts, and raisins

closeup of Catelyn’s Salad

14 thoughts on “Turnip Greens, Fennel, & Sweetgrass Salad”

  1. Amie M says:

    Trout wrapped in bacon sounds delicious, too!

    1. Kate says:

      That recipe is in the cookbook! :)

  2. Tami in Ruidoso says:

    I agree with your fennel comment, I never cared for the taste either. Lord Janos and I enjoyed the fennel taste in your ‘Summer Greens – w/fennel, grapes, cheese’ salad (it’s in my recipe file as ‘Summer Greens with Grapes and Pecans’). I’ve made that salad many times, and since I love lemongrass and golden raisins, it only seems fair that this fennel salad will be another winner. Thanks!

    1. Vinz says:

      Exactly the same here. I don’t like fennel or anise, but in the summer salad the sweetness of grapes and – most of all – of the jam counters the anise flavour very well.
      I guess this one will be great too.

      One question though, your cups of turnip greens are packed or not ? I can’t find what it should weight in the metric system. :/

      1. Chelsea M-C says:

        I’d go with a big handful instead of a cup. I got out of the habit of using measurements like “handful” and “smidge” while working on the cookbook, but sometimes it’s really the best term. :)

        1. Vinz says:

          Ho, thanks ! Yes, “handful” is maybe more universal too. (even if people don’t have the same hand size haha).

          The “cup” thing is quite hard to get since the quantity it represent is always different @_@ So to get the right amount of stuff, you have to know if it’s a cup of chopped/sliced/whole/packed stuff.
          “Big handful” it is, then ! :D

          1. Rich says:

            Hands also make a handy estimate of a “serving” if you’re trying to balance your diet. One USDA serving approximates the size of your closed fist.

  3. Anne says:

    Why did you exchange lemongrass for sweetgrass? Sweetgrass is not the same taste as lemongrass, I imagine, though… I think that the idea of eating sweetgrass is very interesting. It has a vanilla smell, and I wonder if it has a vanilla taste.

    1. Chelsea M-C says:

      I swapped lemongrass in for some of the early recipes because I couldn’t find any real-world sweetgrass for sale or for growing anywhere! The substitution just sort of stuck after that. Whereabouts are you, that you have access to it?

      1. Anne says:

        I live in Northern Wisconsin. It grows wild on the side of the road here, but also grows wild throughout North America and Europe, I know. I think it grows wild all over the world. I know that you can buy sweetgrass plants on Amazon.com as well as other places online.

        1. Chelsea M-C says:

          Cool beans! I’ll have to check it out, and thanks!

    2. poptop13 says:

      I wonder if ginger or galangal would be a good substitute. While noodling around on the ‘net looking for medival cookery, I searched “sweet grass” in Celtnet’s Spice Guide and got this: http://www.celtnet.org.uk/recipes/spice-entry.php?term=Galingale

  4. ravenwitch says:

    Wow, I made this for dinner and was amazed. I have always disliked fennel but this tasted perfect. Thanks for all the work you put into this sight.

    1. Chelsea M-C says:

      I feel the same way about fennel, and was likewise pleasantly surprised! :)

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