9 ways to prepare fennel bulbs


fennel bulbs

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The fennel bulb is arguably one of the more divisive root vegetables. It tastes like aniseed, so people either love it or hate it. If you want to try it, choose smaller bulbs — those are younger and tender. Ideally, the bulb should be blemish-free and the fronds a bright green.

There's a method to chopping up fennel bulb. Check out this video:

Ready to start cooking? Here are nine recipes to get you started.


1. Indian Spiced Cabbage and Fennel

Source: Soni's Food 

This stir fried veggies dish by Soni's Food works as both main dish (with some rice) or as a side dish. It pairs nicely with grilled chicken or fish. And don't forget the chapattis!


2. Caramelized Fennel Bulbs with Goat's Cheese

Source: Adventures in Cooking  

After you caramelize fennel bulbs for this wonderful sweet-sour-savory-herbal appetizer whipped up by Adventures in Cooking, you can still taste the smallest hint of anise. Serve with a melted tangy goat cheese topping, some fresh dill and lemon zest.


3. Grilled Fennel Tarts

Source: Spoon Fork Bacon 

In case you're not quite sold on the whole "gross, tastes like black licorice" thing, here's a recipe from Spoon Fork Bacon that might just change your mind. Grilling the fennel brings out its natural sweetness and adding an acid to the anise sauce softens the intense flavor, explains the chef behind the blog, who incidentally, grew up hating  the taste of aniseed. The cheese and herb spread on the bottom cuts through the strong fennel flavor without overbearing it. Go on, give this one a try.


4. Apple Fennel Salad

Source: Rawmazing 

Rawmazing claims that apples and fennel are a match made in heaven, so we had to share the recipe for this fancy-looking salad.


5. Chicken, Fennel and Artichokes

Source: Noshing with the Nolands 

Noshing with the Nolands serves up some chicken thighs with fennel and artichokes — a nice warm meal that will hit the spot on a cold winter night.


6. Roasted Curried Fennel

Source: Soni's Food 

Soni's Food balances the sweet licorice taste with a hint of curry and chili. Yum!


7. Braised Fennel

Source: Simply Recipes 

Everybody's braising in 2015, so tackle two trends simultaneously with Simply Recipe's recipe for braised fennel. It pairs nicely with lamb, fish, shellfish or chicken. This recipe calls for anise-flavored liqueur, which will intensify the taste of licorice. If you don't have any or prefer to not cook with alcohol, you can add a star anise pod to the stock when you are braising. And of course, if the fennel itself delivers all the licorice flavor you can stand, ditch the liqueur or pod.


8. Fennel and Orange Salad

Source: And Here We Are 

You don't have to wait until summer to make this fennel and orange salad. And Here We Are recommends pairing it with chelo or lamb kebabs or some grilled spatchcock chicken.


9. Couscous With Chickpeas, Fennel and Citrus

Source: The Kitchn 

The Kitchn serves caramelized fennel, chickpeas, olives, orange and lemon over fluffy couscous for a combination of textures that satisfies.