Prep 5 mins
Cook 26 mins
A delicious side dish to accompany roasted chicken, pork or fish. It also works well as a vegetarian entree with whipped potatoes. The original recipe is from Cooking Light and appeared in 1995. This is my tweaked version. Fennel, for those less familiar, is a bulb shaped vegetable that lots a little bit like a fat celery, with dill-type fronds, and a anise-licorice flavor.
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 4 cups thinly sliced fennel bulbs (about 1/4-3/8 inch thick)
- 2 1⁄2 cups sliced onions (half moons)
- 1 cup red bell pepper, strips
- 3⁄4 cup vegetable broth or 3⁄4 cup fat free chicken broth or 3⁄4 cup water
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄4 teaspoon fennel seed
- 1⁄8 teaspoon fresh coarse ground black pepper
- 1 -2 garlic clove, minced
- 2 -3 tablespoons thinly sliced basil
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons chopped fennel leaves
- Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add fennel, onion, and bell pepper and saute 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want to make sure all of the veggies get a chance to be on the bottom of the pan. At this stage, you will have a little bit of caramelization, but if you see too much browning your heat is probably too high.
- Place the fennel seeds on a cutting board and gently press on them with the back of a chef's knife or rolling pin. You want to lightly break the seeds to release their flavor but not break them to bits or powder. Add broth and next four ingredients (broth through garlic).
- Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15-20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in basil and fennel fronds.
Sometimes the simple recipes are the best, and this is one of them. I followed the recipe exactly and was rewarded with a delightfully sweet and fragrant vegetable side dish. All those fresh ingredients, especially the basil and fennel fronds made this dish really tasty, and healthy! If you like fennel you will like this recipe!