Braised and Seared Fennel Wedges

These fennel wedges are the ultimate crossover food. Served warm, they'd be a lovely side dish on a cold night with Simplest Roast Chicken or Spiced Pork Roast. Served cool, they're terrific finger food appetizer for a picnic. This recipe is based on one from the Gotham Cookbook by Alfred Portale. I've always loved how the braising in this dish makes the fennel silky and tender, while the finishing sear gives it savory caramelizationa luscious juxtaposition.


  • 3 pounds fennel bulbs
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


  • Trim a sliver off the ends of the fennel bulbs, but not enough so that it falls apart. Then cut the bulb into 1-inch wedges lengthwise (like the wedges of an orange).
  • In a large, high-sided saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. Saute onion and garlic for 5-6 minutes, until soft and slightly browned. Stir in coriander and bay leaves, and cook for a few seconds, until fragrant.
  • Pour in the wine and scrape up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Pour in broth and water, and bring to a boil. Nestle the fennel wedges in the pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cover. Reduce heat to medium-low, so the liquid maintains at a medium simmer, and cook for 30-40 minutes, until the tip of a sharp knife can pierce the stem-end of the fennel easily.
  • Use tongs to remove the fennel wedges to a plate, and pour off liquid. (The liquid makes a tasty soup base or enhanced vegetable broth.) Return the pan to medium-high heat. Swirl in remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and return fennel to pan. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5-8 minutes, turning occasionally, until fennel is slightly caramelized on all sides.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature.
Servings: 8
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Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

Hey there ... I'm Lia Huber

My mission is to inspire and equip you to live a richer life through real food by becoming a more competent, confident home cook.

I’m the author of Nourished: A Memoir of Food, Faith, and Enduring Love, founder and CEO of Nourish Evolution, and the creator of Cook the Seasons, Home Cooking School, and the Real Food Reset, and I empower intentional women to cook in a way that brings them (and their families) joy, health, and ease.

Making the shift from processed food to real food doesn’t happen overnight. It’s an evolution that occurs over time, with effort, intention, and belief. And it will change the course of your life. Are you ready to take the first step? I’m so glad you’re here … and I’m honored to be with you on the journey to becoming nourished!



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