Fennel adds a fascinating anise flavor and pleasing crunch to many dishes. Here’s how to slice it to use in soups, salads, stir-fries, pot roasts, and other recipes.
With its wispy fronds and bulbous base, fennel looks like a feather-topped, potbellied cousin to celery. But its flavor is remarkably different. The white bulb and bright green fronds have a gentle, slightly sweet anise flavor. The stalks of fennel are tough and usually not eaten.
How to Choose and Store Fennel
Follow instructions given with a recipe on how to slice fennel. If no specific instructions are given, and the recipe calls for fennel chopped, sliced, or cut into wedges, follow these instructions.
For Chopped Fennel:
Cut each fennel half lengthwise into two pieces to make quarters. Cut away and discard the tough core portion from each quarter. Then, cut the fennel quarters into irregular pieces as follows:
To Cut Fennel into Wedges:
How to Use Fennel:
When you want to bring an anise-like flavor and crisp crunch to a recipe, you can use fennel much like you would celery:
And what about those pretty bright-green fronds? A sprig on a plate makes a graceful garnish, while a few snipped leaves can add a fascinating licorice-like flavor to dishes.
Fennel recipes to try: