Whilst I have come to love the taste and aroma fennel seeds bringto many Tuscan dishes, I have only occasionally cooked with fennel bulbs. So with some fennel bulbs to use it was time to search the internet for something simple. This is therefore based on a Jamie Oliver recipe for slow roasted fennel. It is a very simple recipe. The fennel was trimmed and sliced lengthways into slices 3-4 mm thick.
It was added to a roasting dish as much as possible in a single layer, and a handful of baby tomatoes were scattered over the top. The dish was finished with a sprinkling of fennel seeds, salt and pepper and a drizzle of rapeseed oil. The dish was roasted in the Big Green Egg set up for indirect cooking at 160C (it would work well in a domestic oven too). It was left to its own devices for an hour or so. As the EGG, even when set up for indirect cooking, cooks with bottom heat it means that the caramelisation that comes from the sugars in the tomatoes occurs on the underside of the fennel. It is therefore worth flipping the fennel over to allow both sides to caramelise. If the fennel needs a little more colour, increase the temperature for the last 15 mins or so. The dish has a lovely rich nutty caramelised taste – and it is delightful as an individual ‘tapas like’ dish or as an accompaniment for chicken or other meats. I suspect it may be improved further with a touch of garlic or some flakes of parmesan – but if it never gets any better ……………………….. it is great as it is!
We were making this dish again and just before cooking finished we had visitors and so it was left on the heat for longer than we would have chosen. When we went back to it I thought we may have ‘lost it’. As it happened it was perhaps better than ever! This is a very forgiving dish …………… and it does work well with some parmesan too!!
Slow roasted caramelised fennel
Slow roasted fennel - caramelised with baby tomatoes
- Fennel bulb(s)
- Baby tomatoes
- Fennel seeds
- Salt and pepper
- Drizzle of rapeseed oil
- Step 1 Trim the fennel and sliced lengthways into slices 3-4 mm thick. Added this to a roasting dish as far as possible in a single layer. Add a handful of baby tomatoes and finish the dish with a sprinkling of fennel seeds, salt and pepper and a drizzle of rapeseed oil.
- Step 2 Set up the Big Green Egg for indirect cooking at 160C (it would work well in a domestic oven too). Place in the EGG and leave for an hour or so.
- Step 3 Flip the fennel over to allow both sides to caramelise. If the fennel needs a little more colour increase the temperature for the last 15 mins or so.
- Step 4 Serve as an individual ‘tapas’ dish or as an accompaniment for chicken or other meats.