Roasted fennel and Roma tomatoes

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Roasted Fennel and Roma Tomatoes

I’m always looking for quick, simple recipes to go with grilled chicken, fish, or meat.  I like roasting vegetables because they taste so gosh darn good.  That’s why I love these roasted fennel and Roma tomatoes so much.  It’s great as a side or fantastic on its own.

roasted fennel and tomatoes

I’ve grown to love fennel over the years.  It looks and behaves a little like celery, except that the stalks aren’t edible.  The fronds are, so if you find fennel at the store with them attached, keep them to use as an herb.  Fennel is good for the digestion and full of vitamins and minerals.  It’s typically used in Italian cooking.  The flavor is fresh and anise-y.  You can eat it raw, thinly shaved into salads and slaws.  Cooking it is a different story all together.  The flavor is mellow and can melt into submission with a long, slow cook.  Think:  caramelized onions.  But it’s also good quick roasted like this.  And fennel with Roma tomatoes from the garden….Oh, mama.  I’m getting hungry all over again.

roma tomatoes

If you want to (I’m just thinking about this now as I’m drooling), you could also throw some small, sweet onions into the baking dish with the fennel and Roma tomatoes.  Or zucchini.  Look at me getting fancy!  Also, I’m just sayin’, if you were to puree this into a soup, it might just be more magic than your mouth can handle.  Sigh.  I’m so lovesick for fennel.

roasted fennel

Roasted Fennel and Roma Tomatoes

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 fennel bulbs
  • 6-8 Roma tomatoes
  • drizzle extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

  • Remove the stalks and toughest outer layer of the fennel bulbs, reserve fronds, if desired.  Cut each bulb into quarters.  Cut out most of the hard core, being sure to leave enough to keep the layers together.
  • Cut the tomatoes in half.  Lightly oil a baking dish (I used a 10″ ceramic tart pan).  Arrange the tomato halves and fennel bulb quarters in the dish.  Drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
  • Roast in the oven for 30-45 minutes, or until they reach the desired tenderness.  (We liked them barely tender with just enough color from roasting.)

For grilling:  Prepare grill for direct grilling.  Rub the fennel and Roma tomatoes with olive oil and season well.  Grill the fennel before the tomatoes, over direct heat until brown on both sides, and move to the cooler part of the grill to finish cooking.  Continue cooking until tender.  For tomatoes, follow these directions.

Cafe Johnsonia   // article + photos: Lindsey Johnson of Cafe Johnsonia //

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Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

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