Fennel is composed of a white or pale green bulb from which closely superimposed stalks are arranged. A vegetable with an anise flavor, fennel is commonly used in egg and fish dishes. Varieties bred for the bulb yield a crisp anise flavored vegetable that compliments meats and can be eaten raw. Fennel is a member of the Apiaceae (carrot or parsley family) and is related to cumin, dill, caraway and anise, all of which bear aromatic fruits that are commonly called seeds. It is native to southern Europe but is now naturalized in northern Europe, Australia and North America and is cultivated around the world.
Fennel contains a unique combination of phytonutrients, including the flavonoids rutin, quercitin, and various kaempferol glycosides. These phytonutrients give fennel strong antioxident abilities. Anethole, another phytonutrient found in fennel, has been repeatedly shown to reduce inflammation and prevent cancer. Fennel is also an excellent source of Vitamin C, which is the body's primary antioxidant. Vitamin C can reduce cellular damage that may lead to osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis if left unecked.
Storing & Cooking Information
Handling: To prepare the bulb of the Fennel, first remove the stalks of the fern on top of the bulb. Trim the root end from the bottom of the bulb. Wash and dry fronds and chop. Halve bulb vertically and separate layers as you would an onion. Slice each layer into strips to preferred size.
Storing: Fennel can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks in a plastic bag in hydrator drawer of the fridge.