Season for fennel: anise flavor becomes milder when heated
The Italians have many recipes for their beloved fennel. In German kitchens, too, the tuber is increasingly being served on the table. However, the anise-like taste is not for everyone. If you have to get used to the sweet aroma, you can combine the fennel with other vegetables such as tomatoes and peppers.
Fennel tastes raw in a salad with carrots and apples. A delicious starter are thinly sliced fennel strips marinated in lemon juice. The taste becomes a little milder when heated. For a simple fennel vegetable you can quarter the tuber lengthways and boil in salted water with the juice of half a lemon for 10 to 15 minutes. Refined with a little butter, this is the perfect accompaniment to poultry, fish and seafood. Try the extraordinary vegetables in pasta sauces and Asian wok.
The vegetable fennel, also called bulbous fennel, originally comes from the Mediterranean. However, the edible part is not a bulb, but an above-ground onion. Before preparation, the fennel is washed thoroughly to remove the sand between the leaves. Stems, dark spots and the roots are removed. Now halve the tuber, remove the hard core and cut the rest into slices, slices or cubes, depending on the recipe. The leafy green is an excellent seasoning for salads and soups.
Home-grown fennel is still available until October. Fresh tubers are white to light green in color, have a firm consistency and a strong green foliage. Brown discolouration and dried cut surfaces indicate that it has been stored for too long. Fennel tastes best fresh. Wrapped in a damp cloth, it stays in the vegetable compartment of the fridge for a week or two.
Like any vegetable, fennel is low in calories. Valuable ingredients are vitamins A, C and E, folic acid, iron, magnesium, potassium and calcium. The typical taste is primarily due to essential oils such as anethole and fenchone, which among other things have a positive effect on digestion. Fennel seeds in tea and bread spices are said to alleviate flatulence and help with constipation and a feeling of fullness. Heike Kreutz, bzfe.de