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Ooh. Fennel...try this. My cookbook group & were practically licking the pan: Lidia Bastianich's

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Joined: Jan 11, 2007


Posted to Thread #11953 at 10:19 pm on Sep 14, 2008

Baked Fennel with Proscuitto

This was a raging hit at the Cookbook Group, January 2008! From Lidia's Italy. Definitely would make again. Easy, easy, easy and you can have everything done in advance and just pop it in the oven.

This gratin of fennel wedges and strips of prosciutto drizzled with butter and topped with Parmesan, then baked until golden is rich, aromatic and irresistible. Baked Fennel with ProscuittoServes 6 (ha! Not if I'm around!)

2 1/2 pounds fresh fennel, trimmed and cut into wedges (don't trim the bottom--it is used as an anchor to keep the pieces together. Trim the top and then cut in 1 1/2 in wide slices)
3 oz. thinly sliced Prosciutto
1/3 cup melted butter
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt or kosher
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Bake in a 9 x 13 inch baking dish

Bake at 350.

Bring about 4 quarts of water to the boil in a large pot. Drop in fennel wedges and cook at a gentle boil for 10 -15 minutes, just until you pierce them easily with a sharp knife tip. Lift out the wedges and drain well.

Use scissors and cut the prosciutto slices into strips about 1/4" wide. Set rack in the middle of the oven, preheat to 350 Degrees.

Coat the bottom of the baking dish with a tablespoon or two of the melted butter. Lay the drained fennel wedges in one layer, filling the dish. Scatter the prosciutto slices over and in between the wedges. Add salt & pepper. Drizzle the remaining butter all over. Finally, add a sprinkle of the grated cheese, covering the whole dish evenly.

Bake the dish for 25 minutes or until the top is crusty and golden and the edges of the prosciutto and fennel are also colored and crisp.*

*I ran it under the broiler towards the end to color the top.

You can't do anything about the length of your life, but you can do
something about its depth. - M

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