Vegetable Profile, Fennel

If you have ever spotted this veggie in the store or farmers market and wondered, “what on earth is that?” you probably aren’t alone.  Read on to learn a little about this vegetable and what to do with it.

fennel4Fennel is a part of the Umbellifereae  family which includes Carrots, parsley, dill and coriander to name a few .It is a good source of Vitamin c, Pottasium, folate and dietary fiber.  It is more widely used in Europe than in the United States, it seems to be gaining some popularity here though. It Tastes faintly of Anise it is crunchy like celery when raw. Usually it is either cut in half and cooked or sliced.  If You want to slice it You need to slice it  thinly , a Mandoline is the best tool for the job. Little Red barn Produce has a Pinterest page with Fennel recipes. If you click on the link it will take you there.

It is a beautiful plant and I love seeing it in the garden. It attracts beneficial insects if it is allowed to flower. fennel3

Here is an image of Fennel in the garden before it is trimmed.

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It can be a bit tricky to grow the bulbs can go quickly from not quite ready to flowering as you see in the photo above. I hope the recipes will inspire you try this veggie the next time you see it or give you ideas of what to do with it if it shows up in CSA Box!

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