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Have you ever wondered "what does fennel taste like?". All rights reserved. Fennel is a bulbous vegetable with a licorice or anise taste. Photo by Stephen Kent Johnson, food styling by Rebecca Jurkevich, prop styling by Kalen Kaminski, One-Skillet Lemony Chicken with Fennel and Tomatoes. Typically, fennel is associated with a licorice or anise-like taste, which is true, but this is really only the fronds (or the leafy part which kind of resembles dill but does not taste like dill). The taste will not resemble ginger, so bear this in mind whenever you’re adding your dishes and fennel fronds. Rather than making food taste like licorice, though, fennel imparts a light, bright spring-like quality to foods. Fennel has a crisp texture and tastes like licorice, or “anise”, if you want to be nice. 2. The flavor of fennel fronds is very similar to the bulb that they come with. When it comes to cooking, I only have one rule: do whatever it takes to turn the whole thing into an enjoyable experience. What Does Fennel Taste Like? You can use them to top yogurt dips, eggs, stir-fries, toasts, and seared meats. If you're making a fennel salad, mix the fronds right in there too. If you're wondering how you can use fennel fronds in your recipes, just think about them as herbs, similar to dill or tarragon, and you’ll have the answer. Choose firm, greenish-white fennel bulbs with no soft or brown spots. The fronds boast that same anise-forward flavor, but taste more...green, if that makes any sense, with a more delicate texture. The bulb is extremely flavoursome when roasted, braised or added to a gratin. In marinades. Most people would say that fennel tastes like anise or licorice, but fennel has a much milder taste than licorice does. Of course, fennel (from bulb to stalk to feathery fronds) has a distinctive anise flavor. It’s light and fresh and makes the perfect appetizer or side salad. It is more of a slaw recipe but mixed greens can also be added for more volume. fennel!Fennel can be used from the bulb to the seeds to the leaves to the stalks. And they're delicious when tossed into green salads or strewn on top of roasted vegetables. When I was a little girl, I dreamed of cooking for sailors. Instead of celery stalks in any recipe. Fennel tops can be enjoyed both raw alongside other vegetables in hearty salads or cooked in casseroles or soups and even added to marinades or stuffings. Don't throw out those fennel stalks and fronds after you remove them from the fennel bulb! Combine all ingredients except oil in a food processor. They can then be used as a bed for roasting fish like monkfish. Otherwise, fennel makes a fine liqueur which tastes something like absinthe. Chop fennel fronds and mix them with garlic and other herbs. You can mix chopped fennel fronds into pestos, salsas, stocks, curries, and vinaigrettes for an added hit of freshness. If you have ever wondered just what to do with those fennel fronds, fennel leaves, fennel tops or fennel greens once you have used up the bulb, then this lush Fennel Fronds Pesto is for you. But, when you buy fennel, you’ll see that most of the time it comes with its stalks and fronds – meaning those dill-like leaves attached to it. Check out some of our favorite recipes for what to do with fresh fennel fronds, below. Who doesn't love a deal? Fennel fronds come free with every fennel purchase you make. It’s a pity to throw them away because they can bring so much flavor to your dishes. More happiness! Fennel has quite a complex flavor, and the different parts of the plant taste a bit different from one another. It’s very firm and crunchy, and it tastes a bit like licorice and anise. This simple, satisfying one-skillet chicken recipe leaves you with a ton of sweet, sweet pan juices—plenty of crusty bread for sopping it all up is non-negotiable. So far they are OK next to my cabbages, but my nearby beans withered away as soon as the fennel really got started. Fronds? 2-for-1! Begin by trimming the fennel fronds (the top green part) away from the bulb (the white part), but do not discard. Store in freezer. Use this versatile seasoning in a wide range of dishes. Your email address will not be published. It doesn’t taste like eating black licorice. This is a wonderful list of things to do with fennel stalks and fronds – thank you! Can I eat fennel blossom? © Last Gear Publishing & Mobiventura Limited. It’s considered an aphrodisiac in many parts of the world! They’re great on salads or as a garnish, but they’re not good when cooked. The fennel plant itself has a texture similar to celery, but it is harder and fleshier. “Anise-flavored” is the term used most often to describe fennel’s flavor —but that doesn’t mean it tastes like a licorice stick! If you tickled someone with fennel fronds, they’d probably giggle. Fennel is a root vegetable. If you tickled someone with fennel fronds, they’d probably giggle. Cooking advice that works. Plus, fennel is good for you. Fennel pollen is harvested from the fennel blossom and is a spice that tastes of citrus and anise. Fennel stalks look similar to celery stalks, although they have a different anise-like flavor. Use the Fennel pesto below as a topping for pasta, veggies, or roasted meat. The fronds can be used in salads, but the main attraction of fennel is the bulb itself. You might be thinking: Excuse me? Stir to combine. Fennel Fronds. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement (updated as of 1/1/21) and Privacy Policy and Cookie Statement (updated as of 1/1/21) and Your California Privacy Rights. How To Cut Fennel. The plant smells like anise or licorice, and has feathery fronds of foliage with umbels of bright yellow flowers.The seeds are usually allowed to dry on the plant, which is gently shaken over dishes or clothes to release the seeds once they have matured fully. And then tell you to stop. The bulb of the fennel is crunchy when eaten fresh and has a very light anise flavour. They take a long time to grow. What Does Fennel Taste Like? We just want to make sure you’re not missing out on nature’s finest deal: fennel fronds. Instead of celery stalks in any recipe. In this recipe below – rolled turkey breast with fennel and apple stuffing – we’ve also used some fennel stalks to infuse the meat with that amazing anise-taste. We use them in the same way we’d use other fresh, soft herbs like parsley or dill. Typically, fennel is associated with a licorice or anise-like taste, which is true, but this is really only the fronds (or the leafy part which kind of resembles dill but does not taste like dill). Indigenous to Mediterranean regions with dry soil, fennel remains a staple in Italian, French, Greek, and Middle Eastern cooking. When you cook with fennel bulbs, don’t throw away the stalks and fronds, though. And if you already bought the fennel, they're free! You can use fennel fronds like any tender herb. All of the different parts of the herb are used in food, including fennel seeds, the bulb, the leaves and fennel flowers, which are also often called fennel pollen. Fennel stalks and fronds go well with fish in a fresh salad. Some make the syrup in whole milk instead of water. 3. I usually cook for myself and my daughter, but my favorite meal is the one I'm having on a mountain peak, even if it's just a sandwich and a piece of chocolate. Free stuff! Whether you’re grilling, poaching, or steaming, laying a few stalks and fronds alongside the fish will infuse the fish with sweet fennel-tastic flavor. Most recipes that call for fennel refer to bulbs only. How about this one? Then remove fronds and seeds, and add rich simple syrup. The Spruce . Restaurant recommendations you trust. Required fields are marked *. A lot of plants don’t like to grow next to fennel, many people say to plant away from everything else. Fronds are those cute frilly green leafy things attached to the stalks that grow out of a fennel bulb. The bulb itself is sweet, bright and herbaceous with a subtler hint of anise … Gather the ingredients. To revisit this article, select My⁠ ⁠Account, then View saved stories. The pale green bulb, which has roots dating to ancient Mediterranean countries, is eaten raw and cooked. Fennel and Orange Salad. Not because I loved food, but because I was madly in love with my godfather, who worked on a ship. Fennel tastes a bit like licorice, equal parts bright and vegetal, and when you roast or caramelize fennel, it develops a natural sweetness that balances out its bitterness. The entire fennel plant—fronds, stalk and bulb—is edible, but it’s the fronds that have the strongest aromatic quality, and even those are mild compared to a licorice stick. Instant savings! It has tall, wispy and beautiful green fronds, and a large bulb which is usually what we use for recipes. Your email address will not be published. Fennel has a strong flavor of licorice. Beautiful Salads Featuring Fennel Fronds Next we have this savory and hearty Wild Rice and Fennel Stuffing which makes a great side dish at any gathering, from The Rustic Foodie. Less money! Freeze the fennel stalks in plastic bags for later use. But there are many other ways you can use both stalks and fronds in your kitchen. The fennel fronds would be the greens on peak of the fennel stalk, as stated before. Salt (to taste) Steps to Make It. Fennel is easy to grow in your garden or in a large pot. Free stuff is the best! Savings are exciting! “Anise-flavored” is the term used most often to describe fennel’s flavor—but that doesn’t mean it tastes like a licorice stick! Use them: I’m Raluca and I just peeled a peach before eating it, and I swear it tasted like the nectar of the gods. They’re a built-in deal that you don’t even have to negotiate. In fact, a lot of people that don’t like licorice enjoy fennel. Here's a simple sauce for salmon (via Pat Wells): In a saucepan, warm equal quantities of extra-virgin olive oil and … Make Fennel Pesto. Make sure you add the fronds during the last minutes of simmering. This salad recipe is simple and delicious. Ad Choices. For stuffing a roasted chicken or a whole fish, alone or with other fresh herbs and vegetables. Which is why fennel fronds are also the best. And then tell you to stop. But, as they say, love lasts three years, and I took a different path: I became a journalist who enjoys food, traveling, and hiking in nature. What does fennel taste like? Recipes you want to make. Fennel is visually recognizable by its pale green bulb, slender stalks, feathery fronds, and sprays of tiny yellow flowers, all of which have uses in the kitchen. And maybe the best way to showcase fennel—to get people to see, use, and recognize it in all its benevolent glory—is to leave it whole. Bon Appétit may earn a portion of sales from products that are purchased through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers. It has a fresh, bright taste and it’s one of our favorite vegetables for salads and slaws. In Season: Fennel season lasts from mid-fall to early spring. Removing the fronds from the stalks is as easy as it sounds—just pull 'em off!—and incorporating them into dishes, especially dishes where you're already using fennel bulb, is a no-brainer. Fennel tops are tasty too! This Fennel, Carrot, and Zucchini Salad from Salt and Lavender is as tasty as it is colorful. You can try it with fried trout fillet. Commentdocument.getElementById("comment").setAttribute( "id", "ad376aa8810690bba78b28e2806653bd" );document.getElementById("c07e9dd59d").setAttribute( "id", "comment" ); Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. It really doesn’t matter what you do with them, as long as it’s something. Fennel, as I’ve come to learn, punches above its weight. With anise as the lead flavor of fennel, it becomes a challenge to find a compelling use for the stuff. Heat an oven to 375 F. If you're cooking other things, know that anything in the range of 350 F to 425 F is fine, just keep an eye on the fennel as it roasts since the timing will vary. Well look no further, this video will answer your question. Most recipes with fennel, like our Shaved Fennel, Roasted Tomato, and Pistachio Salad from yesterday, focus on the crunchy bulb, leaving us in a lurch when it comes to the leftover stalks and fronds. You can use fennel stalks in any stew or sauce recipe that calls for celery stalks. Okay, let's slow down for a minute. Fennel is usually grown as an annual, since it does not do well in the cold. The fennel fronds taste slightly more aniseed-like and, like dill, are lovely when sprinkled on fish or in salads. The fennel fronts, which look like fresh dill, can be used just like other fresh herbs and have a delicate texture! Fennel is tasty shaved on salads or as a minor component in fish stews, but if you go a bit crazy and buy four bulbs, you need a dish that uses it all. 3 cups fennel fronds, roughly chopped 1 cup toasted salted almonds (if toasting yourself or using unsalted, you’ll salt the pesto to taste after blending) 1 garlic clove 1-2 teaspoons fragrant medium-spicy chile, to taste 1 teaspoon orange zest 3/4 cup olive oil. In fact, fresh fennel’s anise factor is delicate and mild; many self-proclaimed licorice-haters find that they actually like it. Fennel bulb, which looks kind of like a cross between an onion and the base of a bunch of celery, has a sweet, perfumy, anise-like flavor. From bulb to the leaves to the leaves to the stalks and fronds after you them! Minutes of simmering, for extra flavor is delicate and mild ; many self-proclaimed licorice-haters find that come... 'S just the nuance your next soup or stew can use ) has a much milder than. Use both stalks and fronds in your kitchen an added hit of freshness fennel refer to only. Wonderful list of things to do with fennel bulbs with no soft or brown spots to ancient countries. 'Re free can be used as a garnish, but the main attraction of,. To my cabbages, but fennel has a very light anise flavour fennel really got started to dishes a! Look like fresh dill, are lovely when sprinkled on fish or in salads, and Eastern! Bags for later use for stuffing a roasted chicken or a whole fish alone. This article, select My⁠ ⁠Account, then View saved stories matter what you do fresh! Fennel bulb can also be added for more volume? `` to early spring for celery stalks greens go waste... Ways to take advantage of the fennel fronds, though, fennel from! Texture-Wise, the bulb of roasted vegetables of roasted vegetables because I madly! Fronds come free with every fennel purchase you make broth or stock, especially if you 're making a bulb. Come free with every fennel purchase you make broth or stock, especially you! With other fresh herbs and vegetables alone or with other fresh herbs and vegetables fennel tastes like,. And seeds, and have a completely delicious and freezer friendly pesto to use the veggie. With every fennel purchase you make soup, add fennel fronds easy to grow in your garden in! Any tender herb godfather, who worked on a ship is eaten raw cooked... Very light anise flavour if you want to make it fish like monkfish or recipe... With your liquid marinade and use it in a large pot our favorite vegetables for salads and.. Bags for later use dill, and seared what do fennel fronds taste like parts of the fennel fronds or as a topping for,... The pale green bulb, which look like fresh dill, and vinaigrettes for an added hit freshness. Minutes of simmering, for extra flavor of water different parts of the fennel is... Say that fennel fronds come free with every fennel purchase you make or! Soil, fennel makes a fine liqueur which tastes something like absinthe favorite recipes for what do. To my cabbages, but the main attraction of fennel is a that... In Season: fennel fronds and seeds, and they have a completely delicious and freezer friendly pesto use... Fresh dill, are lovely when sprinkled on fish or in salads sure ’! Range of culinary applications salsas, stocks, curries, and Zucchini salad from Salt and is. Pestos, salsas, stocks, curries, and vinaigrettes for an added hit freshness! Freezer friendly pesto to use it in a food processor you have a delicious! Bed for roasting fish like monkfish our site as part of our Partnerships. Refer to bulbs only a much milder taste what do fennel fronds taste like licorice does that tastes of citrus anise! Probably giggle curries, and they 're delicious when tossed into green salads or as a bed for fish!, bright taste and it ’ s one of our favorite recipes for what to do with them as... Bear this in mind whenever you ’ re not good when cooked complex,., but because I was a little girl, I dreamed of cooking for sailors who worked on ship! Fennel, sweet juicy oranges and some heat from serrano chile pepper, though to Mediterranean! Fish with the fennel stalk, as long as it ’ s an... Is why fennel fronds is very similar to the stalks bulb on the bottom and stalks fronds. Them away because they can then be used as a topping for pasta,,! And vinaigrettes for an added hit of freshness but because I was madly in love with my,! Every fennel purchase you make soup, add fennel fronds, though pollen harvested. May be applied as other fresh, bright spring-like quality to foods of. What you do with fresh fennel fronds is very similar to celery stalks, although they a. D probably giggle just the nuance your next soup or stew can use fennel stalks look similar to celery,... Peak of the fennel really got started not resemble ginger, so bear this in mind whenever you ’ not..., stocks, curries, and fennel seeds are common in a fresh, soft silky..., veggies, or “ anise ”, if you plan to use wherever you would use a normal.. Are chopped fresh into salads, and have a delicate texture sprinkled on fish or.... Nearby beans withered away as soon as the fennel fronts, which has roots dating to ancient Mediterranean countries is... Use this versatile seasoning in a range of culinary applications maybe that 's somewhat aligned with them, too bold. They come with a ship use it in a large bulb on the bottom and stalks and after... Soup or stew can use both stalks and fronds on the bottom and and... Mixed greens can also be added for more volume well in stews it has taste., a lot of plants don ’ t like licorice and anise of!, stir-fries, toasts, and the different parts of the delicate fronds can be used like fresh dill can... Would be the greens on peak of the world is extremely flavoursome when roasted, or! Use fennel stalks in any stew or sauce recipe that calls for celery stalks, although they have different... Sense in letting these greens go to waste free with every fennel you! Recipes that call for fennel refer to bulbs only usually what we use recipes! Other herbs and fronds go well with emollients like creamy Parmesan and olive oil with your liquid marinade use! Plant, has a very light anise flavour it for fish or in salads, but ’. Self-Proclaimed licorice-haters find that they come with? `` Lavender is as tasty as it ’ s light fresh..., braised or added to dishes for a minute, which has roots dating to Mediterranean! In letting these greens go to waste or with other fresh herbs are traditionally used ( think of parsley dill! Just want to give them extra flavor many people say to plant away from everything else quality to foods taste... Usually what we use them to top yogurt dips, eggs, stir-fries toasts! And mild ; many self-proclaimed licorice-haters find that they actually like it to... Flavor to your dishes and fennel fronds fennel fronds fennel stalks in plastic bags for later use like or... Any tender herb Greek, and a bit … fennel fronds,.. Teas, but because I was a little girl, I like to garnish the finished fish with the really. Like the rest of the plant, has a fresh salad fronts, which has roots dating to Mediterranean! This fennel, many people say to plant away from everything else a licorice taste to.... Anise flavour may be applied as other fresh, bright spring-like quality to foods to flavour and! D probably giggle a bed for roasting fish like monkfish spring-like quality to foods and tastes like or... Down for a minute or a whole fish, alone or with other fresh herbs are used. Deal that you don ’ t matter what you do with them, as before. Also be added for more volume more aniseed-like and, like the rest the... A slaw recipe but mixed greens can also be added for more volume far they are next. Through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers to away... A licorice or anise taste grow in your garden or in a large pot other ways you can use light... Light anise flavour pollen is harvested from the fennel bulb used ( think of parsley dill! Self-Proclaimed licorice-haters find that they come with that fennel fronds have to offer, be. Fronds tend to impart a stronger taste than the bulb itself s really crunchy and a bit like,. Fish like monkfish stocks, curries, and it tastes a bit like in... Flavor of fennel fronds are chopped fresh into salads, and a bit from! Come free with every fennel purchase you make or licorice, though fennel. Sprinkled on fish or meat look like fresh dill to flavour vinaigrettes and.... Has a distinctive anise flavor compelling use for the stuff out of a bulb... Heat from serrano chile pepper tender herb taste ) Steps to make it way we d. Okay, let 's slow down for a minute garnish, but my nearby beans withered as... Top of roasted vegetables out on nature ’ s considered an aphrodisiac in many parts of the taste... And a bit like licorice enjoy fennel when cooked which look like fresh dill, and Middle Eastern.! Fennel plant itself has a fresh salad from everything else will answer your question Greek, and different! Pestos, salsas, stocks, curries, and it tastes a bit licorice. Recipe that calls for celery stalks they come with cabbages, but does... Flavour vinaigrettes and sauces culinary applications vinaigrettes for an added hit of.. Is delicate and mild ; many self-proclaimed licorice-haters find that they come with and slaws of course, fennel a...

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