Fennel is a bulbous vegetable with a tall, wispy, fronded top that looks rather like dill. The fronds can be used in salads, but the main attraction of fennel is the bulb itself.
It’s very firm and crunchy, and it tastes a bit like licorice and anise. It has a fresh, bright taste and it’s one of our favorite vegetables for salads and slaws. It can also be grilled or braised until tender. For those who say they don’t like licorice… Just try it.
The bulb is made of overlapping layers of vegetable, almost like a cabbage — but very firm and hard. To be used in salads, fennel should be sliced very thin, and it’s easiest to do this with a mandoline.
I love fennel in a fresh summer salad topped with Parmesan, fresh garden tomatoes and a white balsamic dressing.
Recipe is easy:
- You need a whole head of lettuce, romaine, arugula, butter, leaf
- A blub of fennel sliced super fine, fronds saved
- Fresh tomatoes sliced
- Parmesan cheese
- Lemon Olive oil and white balsamic
- Pinch of salt and pepper
To assemble arrange the torn lettuce on a serving tray. Top with tomatoes and fennel and real Parmesan cheese shavings. For dressing mix 2 tbs of lemon olive oil and 2 tbs of white balsamic with a pinch of salt.
Pour on the salad and serve! I have also topped with diced mango and pear before for a nice twist.
Happy Eating! Www.monicaskitchen.com