Tomato fennel soup

Yield: 8 Servings

Measure Ingredient
3 \N Fennel bulbs (abt. 2 lbs.)
1 cup (2 sticks) plus
2 tablespoons Unsalted butter
1 large Yellow onion coarsely chopped
6 \N Garlic cloves; minced
\N \N Grated Fontina cheese
\N \N Salt and pepper; to taste
2 cans Italian plum tomatoes (35 oz. each)
½ cup Pernod
2 cups Canned chicken broth

GARNISH

Cut tops from fennel bulbs; reserve leafy tops. Coarsely chop 2 of the bulbs. Melt 1 cup butter in a large pan over low heat. Add chopped fennel, onion and 4 of the garlic cloves; cook until limp, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add tomatoes with their liquid and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.

Process vegetable mixture in small batches in a food processor fitted with a steel blade or in a blender, and then pass through a food mill. Return to the pan.

Finely chop remaining fennel bulb. Melt 2 tb. butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add fennel; saute in the butter with remaining 2 garlic cloves for 5 minutes.

Chop leafy tops of the fennel. Add sauteed fennel, leafy tops, Pernod and chicken broth to the puree. Simmer until heated through, about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle with Fontina and serve immediately.

The authors write: "A great soup to make when the last of the basil has been bitten by frost and healthy bulbs of pale green fennel begin to appear in the market."

From "The Silver Palate Good Times Cookbook" by Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins with Sarah Leah Chase. New York: Workman Publishing Company, Inc., 1985. Pg. 227-228. ISBN 0-89480-831-1. Posted by Cathy Harned.

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