We’ve been on a veggie kick lately – did you see our Cheddar Roasted Broccoli? That’s our most recent favorite. Here’s another great vegetable side – braised fennel. It’s simple to make — cut, brown then braise with chicken stock (or vegetable stock) and a little orange. The orange works beautifully with the anise-flavor of fennel. It’s softly sweetened and so delicious.
How to Make Braised Fennel Recipe
Start with one or two fennel bulbs (we recommend using one bulb if it’s for two people). Usually, you’ll find them in the store with stalks and fronds in tact — the fronds are those wispy green things at the top.
For this recipe, we’re after the bulb, but make sure you keep the stalks and fronds for another day. Use the fronds as you would fresh herbs and the stalks can be kept in the freezer then added to a future soup or stock you make.
Remove the stalks then cut the fennel bulb in half, lengthwise. Make two angled cuts in the center of the bulb to remove the core — even with braising the core can be a bit tough. (If you wanted to, you could save the core for stock).
And finally, slice each half into wedges.
To braise, sear the fennel wedges in a little olive oil. Then flip and sear the second side.
Next, add the zest and juice of half an orange — oranges and fennel were born to be together. Add some stock (or water) then cook, covered, for about 8 minutes until tender.
More Fennel Recipes
- Try our Shaved Fennel and Arugula Salad Recipe or our Fresh Apple and Fennel Salad Recipe – the fennel is kept raw in both salad recipes.
- This Carrot and Fennel Soup Recipe from 101 Cookbooks looks delicious.
- Or, take a look at another simple braised fennel recipe from Epicurious.
- 1 whole fennel bulb
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 orange zested and juiced
- 3/4 cup chicken or vegetable stock (can also use water)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Cut off and discard stems/stalks from fennel bulb, reserving fronds (wispy green tips).
- Slice fennel, in half, lengthwise. Remove tough core by making two angled cuts.
- Cut halves into 1/2-inch thick wedges and season both sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat olive oil in a medium dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add fennel wedges and brown, turning over once, about 2 minutes on each side.
- Reduce heat to low, add orange zest, juice and the stock. Cook, covered, until fennel is tender, 8-10 minutes. Serve with a few reserved fennel fronds sprinkled on top.