Fennel is a favorite of mine, no matter how it’s cooked, but I think it is really amazing sauteed until rich and golden, then baked on delicious puff pastry. I’ve served these as a side dish and as an appetizer.—Lisa Speer, Palm Beach, Florida
- 2 medium fennel bulbs, quartered and thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 1 package (17.3 ounces) frozen puff pastry, thawed
- In a large skillet, saute fennel in oil until softened. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, uncovered, for 40 minutes or until deep golden brown, stirring occasionally. Stir in the thyme, vinegar, salt and pepper.
- Unfold each puff pastry sheet onto an ungreased baking sheet. Using a knife, score 1 in. from the edges of each pastry. Spread fennel mixture to within 1/2 in. of edges.
Bake at 400° for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Cut each tart into 12 pieces.
Freeze option: Freeze cooled pastries in a freezer container, separating layers with waxed paper. To use, reheat pastries on an ungreased baking sheet in a preheated 400° oven until crisp and heated through. Yield: 2 dozen.
Originally published as Caramelized Fennel Tarts in Taste of Home August/September 2011, p67
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