Diary of a Foodie

Parmigiano-Reggiano with Fresh Fennel

Diary of a Foodie: Season One: Italy: Home Cooking

Serves6 (hors d’oeuvre)
  • Active Time:15 min
  • Start to Finish:15 min
January 2007
In Lynne Rossetto Kasper’s opinion, fennel and Parmigiano-Reggiano (“the celestial eating cheese of all time”) rank as one of the most underrated combinations in Italy. After tasting this quick hors d’oeuvre, we have to agree.
  • 1 (3/4-lb) piece Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2 fennel bulbs (sometimes called anise)
  • Pry off bite-size chunks of cheese with a Parmigiano-Reggiano knife or the point of a small sharp stiff knife and put on a platter.
  • Trim fennel, discarding stalks and outer layer if bruised. Halve bulbs lengthwise and core, then cut into 1/4-inch-wide slivers.
  • Just before serving, tuck clusters of fennel among cheese chunks.
Cooks’ notes:
  • Chunks of cheese can be cut off 6 hours ahead and kept, covered, at room temperature.
  • Fennel can be cut 2 hours ahead and chilled, covered with dampened paper towels.
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