Lately I’ve been buying fennel and wasting it. It’s good a lot of ways, but I usually just use a bit and forget about the rest.
It’s been quite balmy here in Portland and today, with this dreary rain, all I wanted to do was crawl into my pajamas, binge watch tv and eat soup. “I only have fennel. That’s a terrible idea for soup.”
Wrong. Fennel was the best idea for soup.
I started with a chicken broth. Dark meat, boiled in salt, pepper, tarragon and lemon thyme. (You might have noticed I use those herbs a lot. Waste nothing!!)
In a different pan, I creamed corn. I mean like really creamed it like my Nana from Alabama would do. Added some butter and salt and then added some milk and let that fizzle out. Then a couple splashes of white wine. To that I added a sweet onion and fennel and caramelized it. Added garlic, more butter and sprinkled flour on it to make a roux to thicken the broth.
Then, I added potatoes to the broth and let them cook. After that was done, I added allllllll the caramelized goodness to the broth and let it thicken up.
This would make a KILLER base for Clam Chowder. Knowing how to utilize fennel is a beautiful thing and I think we could all use a little more soup in our hearts.