This fennel and jicama salad is crazy crunchy, and super light, bright, and refreshing, with a briny punch from feta, black olives, and sun-dried tomatoes. It’s a perfect pick-me-up lunch (add arugula or mixed greens to bulk it up, or even cooked white beans for more protein), or a great dinnertime side to complement healthy grilled or baked fish, or to lighten up meatier meals like Greek Lamb Braised with Tomatoes. You can even use it like a slaw on top of Caramelized Onion and Chickpea Burgers. The pink peppercorns lend a lovely fruity note and extra pop of color to the zippy lemon dressing, but if you can’t find them, feel free to use a bit more cracked black pepper instead.

For more Food for Life, get this Coffee Smoothie recipe, and this Baked Parmesan Zucchini Fries with Marinara Dipping Sauce recipe.

  • Yields: 4 servings
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 20 min
  • Active: 20 min

Ingredients (11)

  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon flaky sea salt, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon pink peppercorns, lightly crushed with your fingers, plus more for garnish
  • 1 large fennel bulb, halved, cored, and thinly sliced, fronds reserved
  • 1 small jicama (about 1¼ pounds), peeled, halved, and cut into thin matchsticks
  • 1 small cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 1⁄3 cup black olives, pitted and sliced
  • 1 ounce feta cheese, crumbled
  • coarsely cracked black pepper


  1. Place the sun-dried tomatoes in a small bowl and add hot water to cover. Set aside for about 20 minutes, then drain and thinly slice them.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small lidded jar, combine the oil, lemon juice, salt, and pink peppercorns. Cover and shake until emulsified.
  3. Finely chop the fennel fronds to make 1/4 cup and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the fennel, jicama, cucumber, olives, and sun-dried tomatoes. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Stir in the fennel fronds and cheese, finish with a little salt, a couple of grinds of pepper, and a sprinkling of pink peppercorns lightly crushed between your fingers. Spoon into bowls and serve.

From Food for Life by Laila Ali. Copyright © 2018 by the author and reprinted by permission of St Martin’s Press. Photography by Matt Armendariz.