Chilled Oxbow Farm Fennel Soup

From Seth Caswell, executive chef & owner of Emmer & Rye

  • 2 large heads of fennel, reserve some fennel fronds for garnish
  • 1 large Walla Walla onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 T butter
  • 1/2 C white wine
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 C vegetable (preferred) or chicken stock
  • 1/4 C heavy cream
  • kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 325°F

Chop white fennel bulbs into large pieces and place in large, heavy-bottomed, oven-proof pan/casserole. Add butter, season lightly with salt and pepper. Warm fennel and butter over medium-low flame for ten minutes, until fennel becomes fragrant.  Butter should not brown.

Add onions, thyme and white wine; increase the heat to medium-high. Reduce wine by half, and then add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, then cover and place in oven for 45 minutes. Fennel is done when it is soft.

Remove thyme sprigs and cool slightly. In batches, place fennel, with the stock and onions, in a blender. Season with salt and pepper and add two tablespoons of cream to each batch. Puree on medium speed for two minutes. Repeat until all of the fennel is pureed. Chill soup well before serving.

The soup can be garnished with the lacy fennel fronds and extra virgin olive oil.