Thursday, April 2, 2009

Fennel Rings

If I ever owned a bar, I wouldn't serve onion rings or fries, but fennel, fried with a lovely crisp coating. Unlike onion rings, the fennel doesn't lose its crunchy texture and doesn't taste so bland. It's spicier, with a kick of pepper. And it's full of fiber and potassium.

Adapted from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman

1 bulb of fennel
2 eggs
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 lemon (or several tbsp lemon juice)
3 tbsp butter plus 3 tbsp olive oil

Clean fennel, trim and cut the bulb crossways into 1/4 inch thick slices. Squeeze lemon over the cut fennel rings and season with salt and pepper as desired.

Mix the flour and bread crumbs in a small bowl. In a second small bowl, beat the eggs. Dredge the rings one at a time in the egg then bread crumbs. Repeat a second time for each slice until thoroughly coated.

In a medium sautee pan, melt butter and oil. Cook the breaded fennel in batches, about 2-3 minutes per side until browned. After the fennel is cooked, transfer to a paper towel to drain. Serve immediately.

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