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Crispy & Cheesy Roasted Fennel

Crispy Cheesy Roasted Fennel

Happy Spring Holidays. We are still going to celebrate, even though many of us are on our own this year. Most definitely a different kind of holiday, but food creates comfort and reminds us how grateful we are for our lives. Crispy Cheesy Roasted Fennel is on the menu. Yes, it’s crispy-buttery and full of spices, cooking at home, always a little jewel.


I had my doubts if an Easter dinner would transpire this year, being land-locked at home. By a stroke of luck a delivery window from Whole Foods opened up early one morning (yes, you must keep checking). In a couple hours my ham, greens and fresh fennel bulbs arrived, unexpected. I am spliting the ham with some friends for their celebration (avoiding the definition of eternity = one person and a ham). Roasted fennel pairs wondefully with pork. (I always think about the Porcetta I savored in Italy). If you have not had fennel, it gets tender and mild after roasting.


Crispy Cheesy Roasted Fennel


I love fennel and here it plays off of the flavor of the ham. This recipe is a compilation of Ina’s Fennel Gratin, then the fennel is elevated with a wonderful spice blend from Michael Chiarello. It took me a while to remember how I had prepared this years ago, of course I did not write it down. But I remembered the spice blend is the key to kicking it up. The spice blend is worthworth having around for roasting vegetables or salad dressing, where ever you want a bit of spice. The fennel is simple to prepare, bake covered until the tender, remove the cover and top with cheese and crisp bread crumbs and a bit more butter and bake until golden brown and crispy. My title for this recipe is a bit ‘cheesy’ because that describes the dish. That’s it.

Crispy Cheesy Roasted Fennel

Crispy Cheesy Roasted Fennel


Being confined at home alone has been a mixed bag. I am dying to get out, back to friends and life. However this confinement is affording me time to go through my little jewels file of recipes and my cookbooks, recalling recipes from my treasured past meals. I have so many recipes that want to share and hope to bring you more little jewels in the future. Wishing you a safe holiday.


As always, enjoy. B

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