Shaved Fennel Salad with Provolone

Shaved fennel salad with provolone and olives and lemon is simple and lovely and Italian. It’s a contemporary combination of traditional Italian ingredients from chef Ignacio Mattos, chef at Estela in Manhattan.

White plate of shaved fennel salad with olives, and provolone cheese, and a glass of wine

This fennel salad recipe jumbles traditional southern Italian ingredients together in a contemporary manner. It’s a simple salad from chef Ignacio Mattos, chef at Estela in Manhattan, that draws on quintessential winter ingredients.–Renee Schettler Rossi

Shaved Fennel Salad with Provolone

  • Quick Glance
  • 15 M
  • 15 M
  • Serves 4
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  • 1 pound fennel bulbs, which is either 1 large or 2 small
  • 3 tablespoons pitted, chopped Castelvetrano olives (or other green, buttery olives), coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • Pinch red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste
  • Zest of 1 lemon (about 2 teaspoons)
  • Juice of 1 to 1 1/2 lemons
  • Provolone cheese


  • 1. Cut the tops and stems off the fennel bulbs. Thinly slice the stems and coarsely chop the fronds. Place the fronds and stems in a bowl with the olives. Add the oil, vinegar, red pepper flakes, if using, and black pepper, and mix until well coated.
  • 2. Using a mandolin if you have one, shave the fennel into thin slices. (If you don’t have a mandolin, you can use a vegetable peeler. Simply cut the fennel into quarters and peel from the cut side.) Season the fennel with the lemon zest and juice and mix.
  • 3. Pile the olive mixture in the center of 4 serving plates and top each plate with the shaved fennel. Grate or shave the provolone cheese on top.

Recipe Testers Reviews

This shaved fennel salad was simple food done right. Each element of this salad shone and the combinations of different textures and flavors made for an elegant and delicious side.

This a perfect winter salad that would pair well with many winter dinners. The shaved fennel salad is refreshing with rich salty notes from the olives.


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