If you are a foodie, then you must know about Fennel. It is a flowering plant that belongs to the carrot family. It has a beautiful appearance with feathery leaves and yellow flowers. Fennel is a Mediterranean-origin plant. But currently, it is used in almost all parts of the world. As a result, it has become an important part of human cuisines and recipes.
You will find many Fennel plants on the roadsides in almost every region, especially Australia, Italy, and California. Fennel is considered the most popular vegetable in Italy, and it is widely used as a garnisher in their recipes. You can eat different parts of this plant-like its leaves, fruits, pollen, and even the oil that can be extracted from it. This plant can be used for a wide variety of reasons due to its exceptional taste. That’s why chefs from all over the world these plants to enhance the taste and add little aroma to their food.
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.