Fennel is a very popular herb not only for its nutritional properties but also for its medicinal abilities. It enhances the flavor of different recipes while also adding important nutrition. Its unique aroma is just Wow!
Fennel has an onion like a bulb that is used as a vegetable. Also, it has long green stalks that can be a perfect addition to your homemade salads, soup, and skews. The vegetable part of the fennel is just like celery or spring onion. Fennel seeds are also very popular that can be used as a spice.
Fresh fennel has an average life span, and it does go bad. On the other hand, fennel seeds have a long shelf life, and they go bad rarely and can be stored as a spice.
How to Store Fennel?
Fresh fennel stalks should be stored well. If not, then they can go bad immediately. Their lifespan completely depends on the storing methods. As they have a large water content, there are many chances of them getting spoiled if treated badly.
People love this crunchy and slightly sweet veggie a lot. That’s why they often buy it in bulk. This cannot be eaten in a large amount, so where to store the extra fennel? Don’t worry because this article will provide you all the necessary information about the fennel. You can store fennel by following methods:
In the Pantry
You can store the fennel in the pantry by ensuring no heat or water source nearby. Use brown paper bags or newspaper to wrap the veggie properly. Fennel will stay good for some days in the pantry.
Moisture and heat sources can make the veggie go soggy and wilted. The fresh crunch of the fennel disappears, and you will not enjoy eating it as a result.
Away from other Fruits and Veggies
Fennel is a very sensitive veggie. The gases produced by other fruits and vegetables can make it go bad, and you will not want it to happen. So, make sure that there is no other veggie or fruit placed near the fennel.
In the Refrigerator
The refrigerator bin is the most appropriate place to store fresh fennel. The fennel lasts longer if kept in the fridge. You either refrigerate the chopped fennel or put the whole piece in the fridge. It’s completely up to you.
Make sure that if you chop the fennel, then put it in an airtight container. And if you are keeping a whole piece of fennel, you can use brown or plastic bags.
Can you Freeze Fennel?
Freezing the fennel is completely fine. It just like storing the veggie for a very long-term period. Yes! You can enjoy frozen fennel for months in your leafy greens or dishes. The taste and aroma remain the same, and the fennel retains freshness for months.
The perfect way to freeze the fennel is to chop it first and then put it in the freezer. This is because it would be difficult to chop the frozen bulb of fennel. Also, you cannot thaw the frozen veggie as it may go bad. You can keep them in an airtight zip lock or freezer bag.
How long does Fennel last?
Fennel has an average shelf life. They go bad, but if you store them well, you will get the veggie’s maximum. Storing the vegetable properly is all you have to do. You People love to eat this crunchy sweet veggie in their various dishes. So, you definitely won’t want your veggie to go bad.
The fennel can stay good for 2 to 3 days in your pantry. This period is valid if all precautions are taken and the veggie does not meet any unfavorable conditions. In contrast, refrigerated fennel lasts for 7 to 8 days inside the fridge.
The frozen fennel lasts the longest. You will enjoy the same taste and aroma even after months. The frozen fennel retains freshness for about 10 to 12 months inside the freezer. You can enjoy them in making dishes and stuff.
How to tell If Fennel is Bad?
Fennel is most likely getting spoiled if it meets unfavorable conditions. Otherwise, either the veggie is consumed in time or stored properly. Besides its health benefits, if you eat spoiled fennel, it may poison your stomach, so you should be very careful about it.
Bad and spoiled fennel shows the following signs:
- You can clearly see mold or fungi on bad fennel. This type of fennel must be replaced.
- The mesmeric aroma of fennel does not long anymore in bad pieces. If you feel that the fennel does not smell like fresh ones, toss them out.
- Discoloration and bruises start to appear on the skin of the bad fennel.
- The fennel, if interacted with moisture, turns mushy and soft. It is not safe to consume such pieces too.
- If the taste does not seem good to you, do not consume it anymore.
What does Fennel Look Like?
Fennel has a little different structure than the other plants and herbs. The plant has yellow flowers. However, its leaves are feathery. The stems in this food have a bulb-like appearance. These are a little swollen.
Moreover, the Fennel plant is erect. It has glaucous green color. Each plant grows around the height of 8 feet. It has hollow stems while the leaves grow around 16 inches in length. The leaves have a thread-like structure and are divided into various segments. However, the Fennel seeds are long. They come in pale green color. Its seeds look like caraway.
Where does Fennel Come From?
Fennel comes from the plant. A brief description of this plant has already been discussed above. However, this plant is a perennial herb. The yellow flowers in this herb and spice are produced in umbels with terminal compounds. Each umbel has a width of around 2 inches to 6 inches.
Moreover, you will find tiny flowers with yellow color in each umbel. Moreover, the fruits of this plant are dry schizocarp. Each fruit has a size of 4 mm to 10 mm. These fruits are called the Fennel seeds. However, the actual seeds are attached to the fruit.
How is Fennel Made?
For making Fennel, you must begin planting the Fennel plant called the Florence Fennel. Look for suitable weather and location while planting the Fennel. But once planted, you can start picking its leaves and stems. Since they are often used fresh, you can just pick them, wash them, and use them as a salad. However, the seeds have a little tricky process. You have to cut the fruit stems, put them in any bag, and then shake them until all the seeds come out. Be a little careful during the process. Otherwise, you will lose the seeds.
What Does Fennel Taste Like?
The taste of Fennel resembles sweet licorice and anise. However, both of these flavors may vary based on what type of seed or vegetable you are using. Fresh Fennel leaves will have a comparatively higher taste than the old leaves. Besides, it also has a great scent makes it an even better option.
How is Fennel Used in Cooking?
For cooking with Fennel, you have various options. You can add the fresh Fennel as the garnishing ingredient at the end of cooking. You can use it in any dish. However, if you use Fennel seeds, it is better to put them along with other spices like garam masala and chili powder. You should leave the seeds to release their flavor and add a little fragrance to the food.
What Types of Cuisines Use Fennel?
Fresh Fennel is often eaten raw. That’s why it is normally used in salads and as garnishing in different cuisines. You can also add the chopped Fennel bulb in the recipe while roasting chicken or potato. Moreover, the Fennel seeds are used in curries, desserts, stews, and bread. Some people also use it in different beverages.
What is a Fennel Substitute?
Fennel has a lot of substitutes. Some major ones are celery, leek, white onion, yellow onion, caraway seeds, and anise seeds. So, if you don’t have Fennel next time, use these substitutes and get the same taste and aroma of a Fennel.
Where to Buy Fennel?
You can buy fresh Fennel in the vegetable stores; however, we have listed some best Fennel seeds in the following paragraph. These products have superior quality and taste.
- Amazon Brand – Happy Belly Fennel Seeds, 2.5 oz
- Jiva Organic Fennel Seeds 2.5 Pound Bulk Bag – Whole Seeds, Non-Irradiated, Non-GMO (Foeniculum Vulgare), Raw
- Anthony’s Organic Fennel Seeds, 1.5 lb, Whole Seeds, Non-Irradiated, Gluten-Free, Non-GMO
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