Serious Eats: Recipes
Dinner Tonight: Pork Chops with Braised Fennel and Caramelized Onions
One thing I love about braised fennel—besides the fact that gentle cooking brings out its sweetness and tones down the anise-y flavor—is that it retains a good sharpness along with its richness. I love braising vegetables because they cook in a fraction of the time it takes to braise meat, and braising turns them sumptuous and succulent. But sometimes the flavor lacks punch. Not so with fennel.
Which was part of the reason this recipe from Nibblous worked so well—it had the rich flavors of a braise but was also quite lively. Extra fennel seeds in the braise amp up the fennel flavor, but could be left out as well. Just be sure to start the onions sweating first thing, so they have plenty of time to caramelize slowly for the best flavor, and to deglaze the pork chop pan to take advantage of the pan drippings.