When I think of the perfect side dish to serve with fresh potato latkes, I start thinking about all the things that cut against the greasy, salty deliciousness of hot, fried potatoes. It’s gotta be crisp. It needs to have acid. Herbs are a huge plus. Heat, for me, is a must. Check all those boxes and you’ll have yourself the perfect complement to the latke!

Jalapeño and Fennel Fruit Salad


  • 1 bulb fennel
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 jalapeño
  • 2 mint leaves
  • 1 dill sprig
  • 1 grapefruit
  • ½ white onion
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 apple
  • 2 basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream (optional)


  1. Separate the stalks of the fennel from the bulb. Wash the bulb and then, using a sharp knife or mandolin, shave ⅛-inch slices of fennel into a large bowl. After slicing the entire bulb, cut the stalks as thin as possible and add them to the bowl. Chop the fronds (the green stuff that looks like dill) and add them as well.
  2. Peel the onion and, using your knife or mandolin, cut slices as close to the size of the fennel as possible. Add the onion to the bowl.
  3. Add the vinegar and salt and mix well.
  4. Peel the apple and shave very thin slices into the bowl. Thinly slice the mint and basil leaves, and chop the dill. Add the herbs to the bowl.
  5. Cut the stem off the jalapeño and dice it fine. Add the pepper and honey and stir well. Using a sharp knife, cut the peel and pith (the white stuff under the peel) off the outside of the grapefruit, then cut into each wedge so that only the flesh is removed. Chunk these pieces into thirds and add to the bowl. Give the salad one more stir.
  6. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour and serve cold alongside hot latkes with sour cream.