Braised Fennel and Onion Pasta Sauce

READY IN: 40mins
Recipe by Bergy

Fennel is a delightful veggie tasting like licorice. If you use this over pasta you may want to thin it a bit with a bit of the pasta water. It is equally lovely as a side dish

Top Review by HeatherFeather

This was a delightful recipe. I did as the recipe poster suggested and added just a splash of the pasta water to thin it a bit so it would make a nice sauce. I served this over potato gnocchi, which it complemented nicely. I think next time I will opt for the tarragon vinegar instead of the balsamic vinegar - I felt the balsamic tasted just a little too pronounced in this. But it was still a very good recipe - worthy of a place on a restaurant menu. I grated fresh Paremsan cheese over the top and drizzled with a smidge of truffle oil as a garnish. If you are a fennel lover, you will enjoy this dish very much.

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 14 cup virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, fresh minced
  • 1 12 lbs fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 12 cup chicken broth (or vegetable broth or white wine)
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh marjoram, use oregano if you prefer it (substitute with 1 tsp dried)
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (tarragon vinegar is good too)


  1. To prepare the fennel trim the feathery leaves and the ouside hollow stalks (chop the fronds for garnish or dry for seasoning).
  2. You are now left with the fennel bulb.
  3. Next trim off the hard bottom and cut a thin slice off one side of the fennel.
  4. Lay it on the flat side and cut into thin slices.
  5. Pour the oil in a skillet that has a lid.
  6. Over medium heat saute the onion and cook until translucent about 5 minutes.
  7. Add the garlic and fennel cook stirring occasionally for about 5 minutes.
  8. Add liquid, (not the vinegar) salt& pepper, cover and cook over medium low heat until the fennel is just tender.
  9. About 10 minutes.
  10. If the mixture is quite wet cook longer with the lid removed.
  11. Stir in the herb& vinegar and adjust seasoning.
  12. Serve over pasta or as a side vegetable dish.

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