Fennel Cucumber Relish
1 lb fennel, stalks discarded and bulb finely chopped
1 lb seedless cucumbers, halved lengthwise, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
6 tablespoons cider vinegar, or to taste
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
Stir together all relish ingredients in a bowl and let stand 15 minutes. Relish can be made 1 day ahead (though color will not be quite as bright) and chilled, covered. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Roasted Fennel Gratin
3 or 4 fennel bulbs, sliced 1/4 inch thick lengthwise. If bulls are large, cut out tough core before slicing.
Butter for baking dish
Salt and Pepper to taste
3/4 cup cream
1/3 cup shredded Parmesan
2 teaspoons finely chopped fennel fronds
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Cut the fennel tops where they meet the bulb and discard them, saving just a few fronds to chop finely. Check if the outer parts are damaged and discolored and if so remove them. Cut the bulb vertically into slices of roughly 1/4 inch thick and wash them in cold water.
Lightly butter the bottom of a 9 by 12 by 2-inch glass baking dish. Arrange the fennel (single layer) in the dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then with the Parmesan. Drizzle with the cream. Bake until the fennel is fork-tender and the top is golden brown, about 45 minutes. Chop enough fennel fronds to equal 2 teaspoons, then sprinkle over the roasted fennel and serve.
By Jennie Cook
Makes about 2 cups
- 2 pounds zucchini, more or less*
- 1/4 cup olive oil or butter, if you prefer
- 2 minced shallots, garlic, or combination of both
- Salt and pepper
Coarsely grate the zucchini. Let it drain in a colander for 3 to 4 minutes or until you are ready to begin cooking. To hasten cooking time, squeeze the water out of the zucchini by wringing it in a clean cloth towel.
In a deep skillet, heat the olive oil/butter. Sauté the shallots briefly. Add the zucchini and toss. Cook and stir over medium to medium-high heat until the zucchini reaches a spreadable consistency. If you scorch the bottom, turn the flame down! (And scrape those delicious bits into the marmalade for added flavor.) The zucchini will hold its bright green color and slowly caramelize into a nice vegetable jam.
Enjoy on toast, or as a side dish all summer long!