We think fennel is a highly misunderstood vegetable – no doubt in part because of its false association as “anise” – but once experimented with, you’ll find the mild, aromatic and unique nature of fennel are worth revering, as the ancient Greeks and Romans did for its medicinal and culinary properties. Fennel is composed of a white or light green bulb with onion-like layers from which closely arranged stalks emanate, resembling celery (and they can be used like celery in any recipe!). The stalks are topped with feathery herbaceous greens near which flowers grow and produce fennel seeds. And, any and all of these parts are edible! Dried wild fennel pollen is a gourmet secret spice we just let you in on.
Season for Fennel: May – Oct
How to Buy and Store Fennel
While purchasing the organic fennel vegetable, you need to look for larger fennel bulbs as compared to elongated bulbs because they are soft and better in taste. Larger fennel bulbs give you extra fodder.
If the stalks are attached with the bulbs, ensure that they crispy green and bright. The bulbs should have no sign of browning, bruising and cracking if you want to save it for a long time.
For storing the fennels, you should place them in a refrigerator with washing them and they should be wrapped. You can save the fennel vegetable for five days, but it is recommended that you should use it as soon as it possible. Fennel vegetable loses its taste with the passage of time.
The dried seeds of fennel can be stored for six months and they can even last long if you preserve them in a refrigerator.
How to Cook Fennel-Season for Fennel May – Oct
Fennel can be your veggie equivalent into the exploration of nose-to-tail eating; every part edible. Both the bulb and stems can be eaten raw in salads, adding a crisp and crunch and refreshingly clean flavor. In terms of cooked, fennel does well braised, sautéed or as a soup’s accouterment. We love the element chopped fennel adds to our vegetable stews! The fragrant greenery can be used as a beautiful garnish or like a fresh herb, adding flavor at the end of your cooking process. When slow-cooked, fennel’s distinctive flavor mellows, and it becomes succulently soft, practically melting in your mouth.
Health Benefits of Fennel
Why to Buy Natural and Organic Fennel
Fennel is not included in the Environmental Working Group’s report as one of the 12 foods most frequently containing pesticide residues. In fact, historically fennel was placed on the ground to ward off insects in the home. That said, when you purchase your fennel organically, you are supporting sustainable practices and those farmers who take your health to heart.