Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Fennel...the food of gods

I came home tonight thinking I had a nice 9x13 of spaghetti to reheat from the other night that I made with Turkey sausage and fresh vegies.  The nice thing about the kids being home for summer is that they eat the left-overs and I know they are getting good food.  The flip side is that you are thinking dinner is prepared ahead of time and when you get home it is GONE!

Luckily, I plan enough ahead, that I just started cooking what I was planning for tomorrow night, and I am glad, because it was delicious!

The first thing I did was grab some chicken tenders out of the freezer.  I buy chicken when it is on sale, and I make sure I repackage into sizes that I can grab out of the freezer, thaw in the micro, and cook.  I usually buy a big bag at Costco so they are flash frozen and you can grab them individually, OR I put enough in the freezer package I prepare for @ meals, and cook enough chicken the first night to cover the second.

I took the chicken tonight, put a smokey, earthy seasoning I put together with paprika, garlic salt, onion powder, chili powder, cumin and a hint of cacao, and threw it on the grill when my roasted vegies were about 15 minutes out on their cooking time.

Here is the star of the show tonight...


6 yukon gold potatoes, chunked
1 bulb fennel (keep the stalks and fronds for other meals)
one leek ( first one out of my garden for the year!)
one clove fresh garlic
2 T olive oil
1t. fresh oregano (chopped fine)
1t. fresh thyme(chopped fine)
cracked black pepper
1 t. butter
1/8 cup parmesan cheese
sea salt

Take the fennel bulb and cut in 1/2, or into thirds.  When Fennel grows, the layers get sand or dirt in between, so rinse well.  Chop into chunks the same size as the potatoes.  (do you smell the licorice smell?)

Rinse the leek well, as the dirt and sand gets in there too when growing.  Toss with the potatoes and fennel and olive oil to coat well.  smash the garlic and add, as well as the fresh herbs

I used my orange thyme tonight.  It smells like heaven...

Here is my oregano, it is growing like crazy.  These herbs are just mixed into my front flower bed...

Spread the vegies on a cookie sheet to roast.  The secret to roasting vegies in the oven instead of steaming, is to make sure each one is touching the bottom of the pan.  sprinkle with black pepper and put in the oven on 375 for 45 minutes, or until the vegetables are starting to carmelize, your house smells like heaven and the potatoes are fork tender.


Pull them out and drizzle the one t. butter, melted on top, then sprinkle with parmesan cheese and sea salt to taste.


Riley (18 year old son) said about the fennel "That is a funny looking vegetable; I'll bet the carrots and lettuce make fun of it!"  I commented that it tasted like roasted candy and my husband said "Like roasted starbursts?"  These guys give me a hard time, but guess what?  There were NO LEFTOVERS...HA!

I pulled 1/2 the grilled chicken off and served for dinner, the other half was chopped and put in a gallon baggie for tomorrow nights dinner.

This was served with a simple fruit salad that was watermelon chunks, tossed with red grapes and blueberries.  (Sorry the picture got poor phone pictures!)
Sigh...I love summer!


  1. I just died of food cravings. I need that meal asap. If it's a rainy day tomorrow, maybe I'll make the soup AND the chicken. Yummy!! Thanks for sharing Kath. As always, I love ya!! You are a great woman :)

  2. I love you too Laura! I am ready to head up for your rhubarb crisp...YUMMO!

  3. Awesome inspiration to take a little more time to create a nutritious, delicious meal :) You rock! Love you Kathleen!