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Braised Fennel with Parmesan Breadcrumbs

Photo: Brian Kennedy; Styling: Lindsey Lower

Hands-on time 15 mins
Total time 35 mins
Yield

Serves 6 (serving size: 3 fennel wedges and about 2 tablespoons breadcrumb mixture)

A quick sear in a little butter caramelizes the fennel wedges and mellows their licorice notes, while braising in stock transforms the texture from crunchy to meltingly tender, almost velvety. Breadcrumbs spiked with nutty Parm-Reg top off this fast, supersimple side. Pair with quickly seared pork chops or roasted chicken thighs.

Ingredients

  • 3 medium fennel bulbs, trimmed and halved lengthwise
  • 4 teaspoons butter, divided
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup unsalted chicken stock (such as Swanson)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup)

Nutrition Information

  • calories 117
  • fat 4.3 g
  • satfat 2.5 g
  • monofat 1.1 g
  • polyfat 0.2 g
  • protein 5 g
  • carbohydrate 13 g
  • fiber 4 g
  • cholesterol 11 mg
  • iron 1 mg
  • sodium 282 mg
  • calcium 117 mg

How to Make It

  1. Cut each fennel half into 3 wedges. Melt 2 teaspoons butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add fennel; cook 7 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally. Add wine, stock, salt, pepper, and thyme sprigs; bring to a ­simmer. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until tender. Increase heat to medium-high; cook, uncovered, 1 minute or until liquid is slightly thickened. Remove thyme sprigs from pan; discard.

  2. Melt remaining 2 teaspoons butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs; cook 3 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently. Remove pan from heat; stir in parsley and cheese. Arrange fennel wedges on a platter. Sprinkle breadcrumb mixture evenly over fennel.