Sunday, October 17, 2021
HomeRecipe ReviewsVegetablesSautéed Fennel with Garlic

Sautéed Fennel with Garlic

How do feel about fennel? I love it, and I’ve made all kinds of recipes with it, both ground as a spice and with the actual fennel bulb (Fun fact: fennel is an herb, not a vegetable). This simple herb has a licorice flavor that gets more subtle the longer it’s cooked and adds flavor to whatever it’s cooked with. It’s delicious with roasted chicken, salmon fillet, or all by itself. That brings me to today’s recipe, Sautéed Fennel with Garlic. It looks like a smile yet flavorful side dish that I’ll love, but there’s only one way to know for sure. Let’s get cooking!

This recipe from Greece: The Cookbook embodies everything we love about a good vegetable side dish. It’s quick and easy to prepare, so you can focus on making the rest of the meal, and the flavors are simple and clean.

Recipe Author: The Team at Tasting Table
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The Ingredients

This recipe promises to be quick and easy, and it’s off to a good start. It has a whopping seven ingredients, and that’s including salt and pepper. Nice!

I even had most of the ingredients on hand. I did have to shop for the tomato juice and fennel bulbs, but they were easy to find at my usual grocery store.

The only downside to this dish is fennel can be a little pricey. The bulbs I found were $2.99 each, $10.61 for four. I’ve found them for as much as $3.79 each. That’s an expensive side dish for me, so I kept the main simple (I had some steaks in the freezer, bought on sale, of course).

Sautéed Fennel with Garlic Ingredients
Fennel bulbs, garlic, tomato juice, extra virgin olive oil, and lemon

The Process

Sautéed Fennel with Garlic promised to be quick and easy, and it mostly delivered on that promise. The recipe lists a total time of 30 minutes, but it took me 38 minutes.

The prep work was very simple, with just a little slicing, mincing, and measuring involved. There was a lot of fennel once it was trimmed and quartered, so I chose one of my biggest pans, a 12-inch cast-iron pan.

Sautéed Fennel with Garlic Recipe Review
Quartering the fennel bulbs

Unfortunately, there was too much fennel to saute it all ad once. The pan was way too crowded with all of the fennel, so I removed half and sauteed it in two batches.

That was what added the extra eight minutes to the total time, but it was worth it. Sauteeing in smaller batches allowed the fennel to come into contact with the hot pan and brown a bit, adding some extra flavor.

I have a feeling even if I had used my biggest pan, a 5-quart saute pan, I would not have been able to saute the fennel in a single batch. I will have to test that theory!

Sautéing the quartered fennel bulbs
My 12-inch skillet was too small to sauté all the fennel at once. I had to remove half and sauté in 2 batches to get a good sear.

With both batches of the fennel browned, it was time to finish things up. That was easily done by adding the tomato juice, salt, and pepper, then simmering the covered pan for 10 minutes.

After that, I removed the pan from the heat and added the lemon juice and fennel fronds. Done! I had a beautiful side dish to serve with dinner.

So how was it?

Clear & Accurate Directions
Accurate Time(s)
This Sautéed Fennel with Garlic recipe reminded me why I like fennel so much: it's easy to prepare, full of flavor, and pairs with so many mains. This version added a few things I've never paired with fennel before, and I loved it! First, browning the fennel adds a subtle smokiness. But what I really loved was the tangy pop from braising it in tomato juice and topping the finished dish with fresh lemon juice. This recipe was easy to prepare, but it did take me an extra eight minutes because I had to brown the fennel in two batches. But that ensured that the fennel browned well and added that smoky flavor I mentioned. Worth it!
I'm Candice, and I'm The Hungry Pinner. I created this blog to share my love for cooking and my experiences with the MANY recipes I've found on Pinterest over the years. Join me as I blog my way through those recipes to find out if they are worth trying yourself.


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