3 ways with fennel
The mild anise flavour is a great addition to summer dishes, says Anne Harnan, Onolla’s seasonal food editor
In a summery slaw
Add crunch and extra flavour to coleslaw by finely slicing a raw fennel bulb and combining with grated carrot, sliced purple cabbage and a creamy yoghurt dressing. The pale flesh discolours once sliced, so prevent browning with a splash of lemon juice or a little vinegar in salad dressing. Perfect alongside spicy chicken wings.
Braised with pine nuts
Remove the top fronds from the bulb (but don’t discard), then slice the bulb thickly lengthways. Keep the root intact to hold the slices in shape. Heat a large frying pan with a little oil and add the fennel. Cook for 3-4 mins on each side, so they are golden brown. Once softened and tender, add a splash of lemon juice and white wine. Let bubble and reduce, then remove to a plate and sprinkle over the reserved fronds and a handful of pine nuts.
Chargrilled with barbecued sardines
Slice fennel bulbs into thick wedges and coat with a little oil. Lay on a hot grill, alongside cleaned, gutted sardines, and season everything with seasalt and black pepper. Let everything cook for 3-4 mins on each side. The fish is cooked when the eyes turn white, and the fennel should be coloured and tender. Drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil before serving.