Did you know that there are two types of fennel? Well, there are! There is the bulb kind that you eat as a vegetable, and then there is the herb kind that get really tall and you use the fronds, flowers, seeds, and pollen from. When I bought my fennel, I planted it in my herb bed, which was a good thing, since it was the herby fennel. I don't really use it much, just admire it's lacy fronds, and that's about all. But I've seen or heard about roasting fish on it or wrapped in it and I've always wanted to give that a try.
I had some mystery fish that my son-in-law had caught. When I pulled them out of the freezer, I realized that they hadn't been cleaned. If anyone follows me on Twitter, I tweeted one day about fish scales everywhere. These were the culprits. Cleaning fish is messy. Hours later, fish scales were still falling from my hair like snowflakes.
So, anyway, stop the complaining and back to the fish. I used a simple marinade and then just roasted them on the fennel fronds spread out on a cookie sheet. It was lovely. Really. The fennel just sort of perfumed the fish. And I felt very chef-ish while I was doing it, which is always a plus!
Fish Roasted on Fennel Fronds
4 fish, preferably cleaned by someone other than yourself
½ cup fresh lemon juice
½ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
Combine the lemon juice, olive oil, salt and fresh thyme in a shallow dish large enough to old the fish and whisk together. Add the fish and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate for about an hour.
Preheat oven to 500. Place fennel fronds on baking sheet and spread out in a thin layer. Sprinkle with a little water and a little olive oil. Place fish on top. Roast fish in the middle rack of your oven for about 10 minutes per inch (mine took about 20 minutes) or until cooked through.
This will be my entry for this week's Weekend Herb Blogging hosted by Dhanggit at Dhanggit's Kitchen.
Hats off to your for cleaning the fish! I've used the tops of fennel that I bought in the grocery store and it still works pretty well. I recently made a (Jamie Oliver) salmon dish that called for dill (or fennel tops) & basil to be stuffed into slashes in the fish and then roasted. It was so good! I was thrilled when I realized that fennel could be subbed for dill because I don't like dill.
5 Star Foodie says
Sounds like a wonderful idea to roast fish on fennel fronts, I can just imaging the perfumed aroma of the fish!
Wow Pam, this is one beautiful dish!! I've been eyeing fennel fronds lately...maybe I can find a lovely fish to go with them... 😀
Katherine Aucoin says
I love fennel, but have to be careful when I use it, because I'm the only one who appreciates it in my house.
Gorgeous! I love that first photo.
In my house fish cleaning is boy's work.
OH my. I would be terrified if I had to clean fish from scratch! That said, I love this recipe!
I really need to try to use fennel more...I love its flavor so much! You are DEFINITELY a chef, I don't know why you would ever think otherwise.
What a super recipe! I used to know how to clean fish- glad I don't have to do it anymore! I love fennel- but have only used the bulb kind- which I usually roast in the oven. Great idea to roast the fish on it.
shabby girl says
When I see fennel in the store it has the bulb on the bottom and the fronds on top. Is that the same thing?