Published May 1, 1996.
To discover fennel's virtues, slice it thin and cook it slowly.
Many people have little idea what to do with this anise-flavored vegetable.
We wanted to figure out how to prepare fennel for cooking and find out which cooking methods would deliver the best results.
The key was combining the proper cooking method with the proper way of cutting the vegetable. Fan-shaped wedges are good for grilling or braising. Smaller pieces are necessary for most other cooking methods. We also learned that while raw fennel is excellent in salads or antipasti, when it comes to cooking, fennel generally responds best to dry-heat methods (although in braising, the fennel absorbs flavors from the cooking liquid to deliver very good results). In all cases, fairly slow cooking turned out to be the key for delivering fennel that was uniformly tender.list of recipes