Oven Roasted Fennel
5 (1)

Oven Roasted Fennel<div class="yasr-vv-stars-title-container"><div class='yasr-stars-title yasr-rater-stars'
id='yasr-visitor-votes-readonly-rater-056286eaa3732'
data-rating='5'
data-rater-starsize='16'
data-rater-postid='4509'
data-rater-readonly='true'
data-readonly-attribute='true'
></div><span class='yasr-stars-title-average'>5 (1)</span></div>

Perhaps one of the more underappreciated root vegetables perfect for an oven roasting is the humble Fennel. This anise-rich Vegetable has such a wonderful flavor and, like so many Vegetables like it, tastes at its best when caramelized to perfection in the Oven. They can be a little tricky to prepare correctly, so this recipe will walk you through how to easily prepare a wonderful tasting Oven Roasted Fennel that will be a great vegetable side dish for your home cooked dinners

How to make Perfect Oven Roasted Fennel

Our recipe keeps things very simple with the ingredients, only Salt and Olive Oil is needed in addition to the Fennel. That is all you need for the perfect Oven Roasted Fennel to be totally honest. Keeping the ingredients minimal will only help to showcase the awesome flavor of the Fennel, so there’s nothing else needed!

The Salt is there to season the dish and extract out some moisture from the Fennel which will help to concentrate the flavor. The Olive Oil is also used to season the Fennel, but also adds an element of fat to the dish which assists greatly in the caramelization process

Roast Fennel on plate
Cutting the Fennel correctly will ensure the best result when they are roasted in the oven

The correct technique for cutting the Fennel

Fennel can be a bit tricky to prepare if you’re new to this vegetable. It has similar qualities and characteristics to an Onion, with several layers of leaves that all shape outward from it’s inner core. Cutting the Fennel the wrong way will result in the leaves all falling apart into individual pieces, which makes roasting a little bit challenging

The trick is to prepare the Fennel in a way that every piece is evenly sized so that they will cook at the same time and stay intact while roasting. You do this by ensuring every cut made goes straight through the center core section of the Fennel

The core is what holds all the Fennel leaves together. So, ensuring that every piece of Fennel you’ve cut is from the core means that not only will the pieces stick together when cooking, but they’ll all be around the same size, so they cook at the same time

For a large Fennel we recommend cutting it into 8 pieces, meaning you will make a total of 7 cuts. First, cut right down the middle of the Fennel, from the top to the bottom, ensuring the core at the bottom of the fennel is cut into 2

Then, cut each half the same way, leaving 4 pieces. Cut each of these 4 pieces in half again, leaving a total of 8 pieces. Each piece of Fennel will have the core running along the angled shape (where the cuts were made), and several leaves shaping outwards from there

Fennel and Potatoes in Pan
Try to avoid over crowding your pan with vegetables. We cooked our Fennel with some Potatoes which turned out great!

Roasting the Fennel

The next step is quite simple in the process. Place the Fennel pieces onto a sheet pan ready to be placed into the oven. You want the pan to be large enough to not overcrowd it. Allow enough space that the Fennel don’t touch each other. Giving space to each piece will ensure they cook faster and more even

Season the Fennel liberally with Olive Oil and Salt. Add the Oil first, then the Salt. Just make sure there’s a generous enough amount so each piece is well covered. Mix the Fennel pieces through the seasoning well so all sides are coated, then they are ready for roasting! I prefer to cook the Fennel flat-side down. This will ensure a better caramelization as the flat side has direct contact with the hot pan

Place the Fennel into the middle rack of your oven which needs to be pre-heated to 375F and roast for around 35 minutes. Depending on the size of your Fennel this may take 5 minutes more or less time. Just keep a close eye on them

Turn the Fennel about 20 minutes in so that the other flat side can have some contact with the hot pan surface. Once the Fennel is caramelized and has turned a lovely golden-brown color then they are done! Perfect Oven Roasted Fennel ready for some garnish!

Oven Roasted Fennel garnished with Fennel Fronds
Save the Fennel Fronds and use them as a beautiful and tasty garnish for your Oven Roasted Fennel dish

Keep the Fennel Fronds for a beautiful decoration and even more Fennel flavor

The green, leafy parts at the top of the Fennel (that kind of look like Dill) are called Fennel Fronds. These are not just edible, but delicious! They have a concentrated anise / Fennel flavor and serve as a great seasoning for the Fennel. They not only taste great, but they look beautiful with their bright, bold green color. Fennel Fronds make for a great garnish to finish the dish

To prepare the Fennel Fronds, it’s best to just use your hands. Break off a few large Fennel Fronds from the stems of the Fennel and then break those pieces into smaller, garnish-sized pieces. If you want them super-fine then you can cut them with a sharp knife in the same way you prepare herbs. We just like to use our hands and keep the pieces a bit chunkier and rustic looking. Totally up to you how you want to use them for presentation, as their flavor will remain the same

Oven Roasted Fennel with Chicken Schnitzel
Oven Roasted Fennel goes perfect with many proteins such as this wonderful Chicken Schnitzel dinner!

Fennel Fronds work well as seasoning for many other vegetables and proteins too. We cooked up our Oven Roasted Fennel as part of a broader meal including Chicken Schnitzel and roast potatoes (that recipe is coming soon!). The Fennel Fronds were a perfect garnish for the Potatoes and that contrast of anise flavor with the sweetness of the Potato worked well

It’s always a good thing when you can utilize as much of the Vegetable as possible. So, we highly recommend saving your Fennel Fronds and experiment with how it works as garnish for your home cooking

Recipe Details

Servings

2 – 4 people

Prep time

5 minutes

Cooking time

35 minutes

Total time

40 minutes

Oven Roasted Fennel Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 Fennel
  • 1 tbsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp. Salt

Instructions

  1. Prepare the Fennel by cutting off the green stems at the top of the Vegetable. Retain the green leafy bits (these are called Fennel Fronds)
  2. Slice the Fennel down the center, cutting straight through the core at the bottom, dividing the Fennel into 2 even halves. Cut each halve into quarters, ensuring each cut goes straight through the core. This will ensure the Fennel pieces stay together when cooked
  3. Place the Fennel pieces on a large sheet pan. Drizzle the Fennel with Olive Oil and Salt, ensuring all pieces are coated. Toss the Fennel to coat on all sides and then place in the Oven pre-heated to 375F
  4. Roast the Fennel for 30 – 35 minutes, turning them over at around the 20-minute mark. Once the pieces have caramelized evenly on both sides they are done. Remove from the Oven and place on a serving plate
  5. To finish the Oven Roasted Fennel, tear apart some small pieces of Fennel Fronds and sprinkle over the top, along with some Flaky Sea Salt. Serve while hot

That’s all there is to it! The simplest recipes are often the best, and that is definitely the case with this delicious Oven Roasted Fennel dish. The flavor you’ll get out of the Fennel is amazing, and it makes for a fantastic vegetable side dish to serve with your favorite protein

Speaking of which, here are a few delicious main courses that we’d suggest pairing with your wonderfully cooked Fennel for a delicious and hearty dinner:

Happy Cooking!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *