Look for small, young, tender organic fennel bulbs. Delicious, Quick Side Dishes Thanksgiving Gratins

201003-ip-michael-romano.jpg
Michael Romano
November 2002

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Credit: © Lucy Schaeffer

Recipe Summary test

active:
35 mins
total:
1 hr 45 mins
Yield:
4
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter a 9-by-13-inch glass or ceramic baking dish. Put the fennel bulbs in a large saucepan of water and add 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring the water to a simmer over moderate heat and cook the fennel for 1 minute. Drain the fennel and let cool completely; pat dry with paper towels. Cut the fennel lengthwise through the core into 1/4-inch-thick slices.

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  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the onions and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden and softened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Spread one-third of the onions in the baking dish and arrange half of the fennel slices on top. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the Pecorino. Top with half of the onions, the remaining fennel and then the remaining onions. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of Pecorino and the breadcrumbs on top and dot with the butter. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour, or until the fennel is tender.

  • Preheat the broiler. Uncover the fennel and broil for 2 minutes, rotating the dish, until evenly browned. Let the fennel stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Suggested Pairing

The richness of the cheese here, combined with the mildly sweet fennel, finds echoes in a round, buttery Chardonnay with little or no oak.

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