Fennel is a very under-used vegetable in my kitchen. Its existence has been limited to rare appearances in salads until now. Creamy, a touch of spice and crisp fennel all in one dish? I had seen a recipe in the Rachael Ray Magazine and had been dying to make it for some time. I believe it was part of a thanksgiving meal, but I don’t need turkey to eat this 🙂
4 small fennel bulbs, thinly sliced (reserve leaves for garnish)
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1 1/2 Tbsp cream cheese
2 Tbsp half & half
salt & pepper, cayenne pepper
parmesan cheese, freshly grated
roasted garlic chips* (if desired)
whole wheat panko (if desired)
Sauté fennel slices in a pan with broth until softened and broth has evaporated. Mix together cream cheese, half & half and cayenne. Add to warm fennel mixture and stir until combined. Pour fennel into ramekins and top with parmesan, roasted garlic chips and panko. Broil until cheese has melted and formed a crust. Sprinkle with fennel leaves and serve! This made 2-3 servings.
*Note on the garlic chips: This was a culinary mistake turned delicious. I love when that happens! I was roasting garlic to add to the fennel mixture and before I knew it, the garlic was hard and dark brown. Instead of tossing it I chopped it into pieces and added it to the fennel at the end.