How to braise fennel with stock and orange. Jump to the Braised Fennel Recipe with Orange or read on to see our tips for making it.
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How to Braise 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. The fennel becomes slightly sweet and very tender.
Most often, you’ll find fennel 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 homemade stock.
After removing the stalks, 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. (Save the core for stock, as well). And finally, slice each half into wedges.
To braise the fennel, we sear it on both sides in a little olive oil. In goes the zest and juice of half an orange as well as stock (or water). Cover the pot and 8 minutes later, it is done.
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Recipe updated, originally posted October 2011. Since posting this in 2011, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear. – Adam and Joanne
Easy Braised Fennel Recipe with Orange
Most often, you’ll find fennel 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 homemade stock (see our chicken stock recipe).
You Will Need
2 medium fennel bulbs
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 orange zested and juiced
3/4 cup chicken stock, vegetable stock or water, see our chicken stock recipe
Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1Cut off and discard stems/stalks from fennel bulb, reserving some of the fronds (wispy green tips).
2Slice fennel in half, lengthwise. Remove tough core by making two angled cuts. Then cut halves into 1/2-inch thick wedges. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
3Heat olive oil in a medium pot with lid over medium-high heat. Add fennel wedges and brown on both sides, about 2 minutes on each side.
4Reduce heat to low, add orange zest, juice and the stock. Cook, covered, until fennel is tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Serve with a few reserved fennel fronds sprinkled on top.