Baked Fennel with Asiago Cheese
2 medium fennel bulbs, sliced to 1/4 inch thickness
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup butter
1 cup cream
1/2 cup shredded Asiago cheese, split in half
salt and pepper
Lay fennel slices in the bottom of a large saute pan. Fill with water until just covered. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce and simmer covered until fennel is tender. Drain water and layer fennel in a medium casserole, set aside.
In the same pan, melt butter and add flour, stirring constantly over medium heat. When your roux is caramel colored, add cream and whisk quickly, cooking until bubbly and thick. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and stir in half cheese.
Pour sauce over fennel in casserole, sprinkle top with remaining cheese. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, or until sauce bubbles, and top is brown.
Pairs Well With
I used to be terrified of fennel. I didn't know what to do with it, and I'm not a huge fan of anise flavor. While visiting my parents, I found this idea in an old cookbook of my mom's and it won me over. We loved it, and now we have a new staple side dish. This dish is easy and quick to prepare, and you can use non-fat cream if you want to cut the calories.
*Based on a recipe by Biba Caggiano