Sunday, May 20, 2007

Rustic Baked Fennel

Ah yes, the fennel. Finochio. Anise. Whatever name it goes by, it is my bulbous friend. If you doubt my love of this wonderful and aromatic vegetable, check out this previous post. Or this. Or this. Or... this.

Lucky for me, my super chef of a husband shares my obsession, and one night recently came up with this Italian style baked fennel recipe. The flavors are refreshing like a salad, but the bread adds depth and heft to the recipe, making for a perfect light meal in and of itself. Bake it up. Pour a glass of red wine. Light a candle. And let this seasonal treat work its magic on you.

Click here for an analysis of fennel's nutrition. 1 cup of raw fennel has a mere 27 calories, but an abundance of vitamin A, folate, calcium, phosphorous, and other goodies.

Rustic Baked Fennel

  • 1 large fennel bulb, quartered
  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup of smashed up bread cubes or leftover crusty bread
  • 1 15 oz. can petite diced tomatoes
  • 8-10 oil-cured black olives, roughly chopped
  • 2 large cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning (ours contains oregano, basil, rosemary, thyme, and marjoram)
  • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • splash of red wine
  • 3 TB extra virgin olive oil
  • Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  • Arrange fennel quarters in small baking dish, spaced evenly apart
  • Sprinkle bread around fennel (not on top)
  • Add garlic and black olives
  • Top with the tomatoes (with juice)
  • Sprinkle with Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper
  • Drizzle wine and olive oil on top of mixture, making sure to brush the exposed fennel liberally with oil
  • Cover with aluminum foil and bake for approximately 40 minutes or until fennel is tender (note: baking time varies depending on size and thickness of fennel bulbs)
  • Remove cover and bake for 10 minutes more

Buon Appetito!



maybepigscanfly said...

I just recently discovered and tried fennel (due to Dreena and VLV). I'm still a novice and trying to figure this mysterious veggie out. This baked fennel dish looks amazing, and very easy too. I'll definitely be trying it out soon. Thanks for providing the nutritional info.


Jackie said...

Thanks for the fennel recipe, sounds delicious.

I don't often eat fennel which is silly seeing I like it and it's available here quite often. Must make the effort and get it the next time I shop.

Emilie said...

This looks great and is very well timed for me. We get lots of fennel in my CSA. I'd never had it before we started doing CSA, but I've developed a liking for it, though my fennel repertoire is somewhat limited. I love it grilled though and tossed with orange segments, olives and mint. That's my fennel default.

Kati said...

This looks delish! I may just have to pick up some fennel at the store today. I also prefer the petite diced tomatoes as opposed to the big chunks - way to go Daiku!

Fennel also contains anti-inflammatory elements and possible anti-cancer effects. =)

Samantha said...

You must be a professional or something. The food on this site always looks so good and the dishes are so perfect for picture. You are making me think that I might like fennel? Crazy!

meesh said...

I've never thought to just eat fennel like that. I've always used it in soups or other dishes as an added flavor sort of thing. Huh.

I just love your blog. Every time I stop by there is another amazing recipe that I have to add to my "gotta try" list. You are quite the cook, Bazu! Thanks for sharing these with us. :)

textual bulldog said...


Jody from VegChic said...

Wow, I missed lots while I was away.

I've never been a huge fan of fennel due to a botched recipe attempt my mom made with it years ago. Recently, my aunt coaxed me into trying a fennel salad she made and it was pretty good.

Maybe I will give your recipe a try too.

What a great story about the lemon? I hope you guys see more of them this year.

The veg dinner thing looked so good. I wonder when the Boston folks will have their next get together!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Hi bazu! Thanks for the visit to my blog. That fennel looks incredible, I will have to give it a shot since my bf loves fennel and I have a hard time with it raw.
I agree that my obsessions as a child really helped when i was researching for my masters. It also means I know lots of random facts about very specific things, which always seems to impress people. Looks like we definitely share a love for good vegan food!
(oh, and thanks for the alert about the comments, i fixed that!)
If you haven't already, you should post seven random things about you!

Courtney said...

Your fennel looks great, and thank you so much for the BBQ recipe! I cannot wait to try it.


aTxVegn said...

Hi, Bazu! Although I'm not a fennel fan, this dish is gorgeous. I can see substituting leeks or onions - almost anything - and getting a great result. Thanks for the recipe!

Urban Vegan said...

I adore always tastes so sophisticated and classy with very little effort. You can easily impress your freinds with fennel.

vko said...

I have to say that I am not a big fennel fan- but am willing to give it another shot because you & daiku make it look so good!

Village Vegan said...

I LOVE fennel! Thanks for posting that recipe. I've made similar dishes before, but I'm looking forward to trying your version.

Samantha said...

bazu- I tagged you! I love your site. I know you have been before so if you don't want to do the meme that is fine with me. I just wanted you to know!

Bridget said...

That looks delicious!! One thing I haven't tried is fennel so this is something I have to put on my 'must try' list.

Coffee & Vanilla said...

I have never tried fennel yet in my life... I think is time to try... I will use this recipe... sounds delicous.

Foodeater said...

I absolutely must try making this! I am new to the joys of fennel and I think this dish will send me over the top!

Vanessa said...

ohmygosh! this is one of those recipes that is so much more than the sum of it's parts. so. mouthwatering. mumumumummmm.

Emmy said...

This recipe sounds divine :) Thanks for sharing.

wayne said...

I was talking to a chef friend of mine, and when he worked at Per Se, one of the vegan options for the tasting menu was a roasted fennel bulb. He recalled the horros of basting it like a turkey throughout service. It took about an hour to roast. It sounds delicious though and I'll have to try it.

bazu said...

Wayne, Per Se has a vegan tasting menu??? I didn't know that! I'm going to go check out their menu right now...
Thanks for your visit and your comment!

Elizabeth Jarrard said...

This is delicious! Thank you for the recipe!!

Lisa said...

Hi :)

I made this today for lunch as my first taste of fennel (that I can remember). I have to say it was quite tasty - very mild with subtle flavors, but the surrounding flavors were quite delicious with it! Thanks!!

Ann K said...

Made this last night. Even without the olives, it is amazing! Thank you so much for the recipe!