Braising transforms stalk vegetables like fennel and celery into luscious, meltingly tender side dishes. Here, brown butter and a bit of orange juice and zest add a deeply earthy flavor and bright acidity. For more, check out our Shaved Fennel and Pistachio SaladBraised Pork Chops and Fennel, and Herbed Beets with Fennel.

  • Yield: 4 servings
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Total: 35 mins 
  • Active: 20 mins 

Ingredients (6)

  • 2 large or 4 small fennel bulbs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
  • 1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange

And see our Ultimate Guide to Fennel for info on its health benefits and history.


  1. Trim the fennel bulbs, reserving some of the fronds as garnish. Cut the fennel bulbs lengthwise into thick wedges. Sprinkle the fennel wedges with salt.
  2. In a large frying pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Let the butter cook for a minute or so until it starts to brown. Place the fennel cut-side-down in the pan in a single layer. Let cook, without moving, until browned on one side, about 3 minutes. Turn and brown the other side, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add the stock and orange juice to the pan, and sprinkle the fennel wedges with orange zest. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat until the fennel is tender, about 5 minutes. Serve, garnished with a sprinkling of the reserved fronds.