Acclaimed Philly chef Marc Vetri’s fresh take on the classic potato gratin makes fennel the focus — giving the dish a lighter feel. Use this dish as a quick and easy addition to Sunday dinner. It’s also sure to convert any non-fennel enthusiasts. WHO ARE THOSE PEOPLE anyway?
- 2 fennel bulbs (about 2 pounds), fronds trimmed and reserved
- About 2 1/2 cups olive oil
- 1 1/4 teaspoons red pepper flakes
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesean cheese
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Trim the base of the fennel and remove all dark and light green parts down to the white bulb. Slice each bulb in half lengthwise. Cut each half lengthwise into 4 wedges and remove the cores.
- Lay the wedges on a rimmed baking sheet and add olive oil to a depth of 1/4 inch. Sprinkle each wedge with a pinch each of salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Top each with about 1 teaspoon of Parmesan.
- Bake until fork-tender, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool in the oil until just warm. Using a slotted metal spatula, transfer the fennel to plates and garnish with the reserved fennel fronds.
You can make this 1 hour ahead because it needs to cool until just warm. It tastes great cold, too.
Pieropan, Soave 2008 (Veneto): Soave is enjoying a surge in quality, and Pieropan is at the forefront of this movement, making exciting, delicious, and affordable wines. Pieropan Soave, with its palate of apple, pear, almond, and citric notes, provides a welcome counterpoint to the herbal intensity of the fennel gratin.