Lemony Roasted Broccoli, Cauliflower and Fennel

Why hello there! I know, I know. I've been M.I.A. for a while, but that is mostly due to it being 4th quarter and having a sales job. It gets absolutely crazy this time of year. The good news is, however, that the beginning of the year is much more calm as everyone is planning for the year and trying to recover from the holidays. Speaking of holidays, I have a few recipes I want to share with you all to help keep you on track during this time of year. Lighter recipes that you can add to a meal, bring to a potluck or eat for dessert.

The first of these is a roasted vegetable dish that you can use to add a little lightness to your meal. But just because it's light doesn't mean it isn't full of flavor! Taking only 30 minutes, this is a dish you can easily put together that even those not watching their waistlines can enjoy. The other thing I love about this side is that everyone can enjoy this whether they are vegan, paleo, gluten-free or anything else you can think of!

If you haven't had fennel before, I think this is a great intro to the vegetable. It has an anise, or licorice, flavor that it imparts into dishes, but it does not take over the flavor of the dish you're adding it to. As a matter of fact, I was so hesitant to try fennel for a long time, because I HATE licorice. So I was pleasantly surprised when I loved it so much. It pairs well with citrus, seafood and meats. There are also different parts of the vegetable that are used different ways. For example, the flavor we love so much in Italian sausage is actually imparted by fennel seeds. And the fonds, or leafy tops, are used often as a garnish for fish or even chopped into salads. This recipe, however, will focus on the bulb, which is sliced into the mix of vegetables and and roasted to release a sweet savory flavor that thrives throughout!

Ok, enough talking about it! Let's do this! For the play by play, continue reading. For the recipe only, scroll to the bottom!


To start this dish, preheat your oven to 425 degrees and place rack in the upper third of the oven. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silpat sleeve or parchment paper.

Next remove the florets from the broccoli and cauliflower and arrange on the tray. I like to use a pairing knife to remove the florets as it gets between the stalks easily. Here, you can reserve the stalks for soups or stock. Also, distribute evenly, caramelized onions amongst the broccoli and cauliflower. I always keep caramelized onion on hand because it's more time efficient to make a lot at once than each time I need/want them. Because of this, I do not have pictures, but if you would like a step by step guide on how to caramelize onions, let me know and I'll get it posted!

Everything ready for the oven. This was an earlier test I did with sliced garlic and just salt and pepper. I found that chopped garlic gives more "garlicky" flavor and the hot smoked paprika gives another dimension of flavor.

Everything ready for the oven. This was an earlier test I did with sliced garlic and just salt and pepper. I found that chopped garlic gives more "garlicky" flavor and the hot smoked paprika gives another dimension of flavor.

Slice fennel and arrange on tray. I also, realized that I did not take any step by step pictures on how to cut fennel and I do believe that it is something more easily seen than read, so I've included a picture tutorial from Better Homes and Gardens here.

Fennel Here. This is a small bulb. After removing the fonds, outer leaves and the stem, I cut and slice in thin strips.

Fennel Here. This is a small bulb. After removing the fonds, outer leaves and the stem, I cut and slice in thin strips.

Chop garlic and arrange on the tray along with the other vegetables. Drizzle with oil and season with spices and toss with the vegetables. As you toss the vegetables, massage the oil and spices into them to make sure they are getting well seasoned.

Arrange vegetables in a single layer and place tray in oven and roast for 20 minutes. Shake the tray to flip the vegetables around and place back in the oven for another 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are well roasted.

Squeeze the juice of half a lemon over the vegetables and sprinkle the zest of half a lemon. Give vegetable a final toss and serve.

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Lemony Roasted Broccoli, Cauliflower and Fennel

Author: Monique Manning

Servings: 6 (about 1 cup each)

Nutrition per serving: 122 calories, 9.3g fat, 5.6g net carbs, 3g protein

Ingredients

  • 2 crowns broccoli
  • 2 heads cauliflower
  • 1/2 cup caramelized onion
  • 2 small or 1 large bulb fennel, sliced
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup grape seed oil
  • 1 tsp hot smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp Diamond Crystal kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper

Method

  1. Prehead oven to 425 degrees and place cooking rack in upper third of oven. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silpat mat or parchment paper, set aside.
  2. Remove the florets of the broccoli and cauliflower and place on tray in a single layer.
  3. Distribute the chopped garlic, sliced fennel and caramelized onion evenly on the tray with the broccoli and cauliflower.
  4. Evenly pour the grapeseed oil over the vegetables and sprinkle 1/2 of the spices on the vegetables.
  5. Toss the vegetables to evenly coat with oil and spices, massaging while tossing. Sprinkle with other half of spices and repeat.
  6. Roast in oven for 20 minutes. Removing to re-toss and rotate tray. Bake for another 15 minutes, or until vegetables are well roasted (not burned).
  7. Remove from oven and squeeze lemon juice onto the vegetables and sprinkle with lemon zest. Toss one final time and serve.