Fennel and White Bean Stew

This Fennel and White Bean Stew is tasty, satisfying and what’s more important, it is ready in 20 minutes! I could stop right here, because that’s a selling point in itself. But I like giving some background info to my readers. I came up with this recipe because I really like the idea of using the liquid from the can of beans. Why waste it, right? I had made a black bean soup the week before and decided I could use the same template for other soups and stews. Fennel being one of my favorite vegetables, I figured that fennel and white beans would be a match made in heaven.

Did you know that fennel is in the carrot family? It is not a root vegetable, however, but rather a very hardy, perennial herb. I actually remember seeing fennel sprout back in the spring in Livity Gardens, without me planting any seeds. For a novice gardener, that was like magic!

Although indigenous to the shores of the Mediterranean, fennel can now be found growing in many places around the world. The bulb is used as a vegetable in cooking, and the fruit, which we also use in this recipe, is an aromatic, anise-flavored spice.

The word fennel came from the old French word fenoil, from the Latin faeniculum, which can be translated to “hay”. Fennel was highly valued by ancient Greeks and Romans, who used it as medicine, food and insect repellent. It was believed that a fennel tea, consumed before battle, would give the warriors a high dose of courage. Fennel is also used as one of the three main herbs in the production of absinthe, an alcoholic mixture that originated as a medicinal elixir and is now consumed as an alcoholic beverage, especially in France.

In 2014, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, India was the number one producer of fennel in the world, followed by China and Bulgaria. It is interesting to note that it is one of the most important spices in Kashmiri cuisine and Gujarati cooking. In many parts of India, the roasted fruit is consumed as a digestive after a meal. Fennel seeds are also candied and used as breath freshener.

For other fabulous recipes using fennel, check out this Quick Fennel and Garbanzo Beans Soup and this Shaved Fennel, Avocado, and Grapefruit Salad.

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Fennel and White Bean Stew

  • Author: Karine K
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bulb fennel, sliced thin
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 can cannelini beans, NOT drained
  • 1 cup tomatoes, chopped in small dices
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon tamari
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • Snipped chive, to serve

Instructions

In a medium heavy pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté 4 minutes. Add the fennel, celery and garlic and sauté 2 minutes more. Add the bay leaf, fennel seeds, the can of beans WITH the liquid, the tomatoes, sea salt and tamari. Cover the pot and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the cover, stir well and keep simmering, uncovered, for 5 more minutes. Turn off the heat, add the coconut milk, and adjust seasonings, if necessary. Serve over sweet mashed potatoes or couscous. Garnish with snipped chives, if desired. Bon appétit!

Keywords: white bean, fennel, stew

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Ragoût de haricots blancs au fenouil

  • Author: Karine K
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 portions 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 c. à soupe d’huile d’olive
  • 1/4 tasse d’oignon, émincé
  • 2 gousses d’ail, émincées
  • 1 bulbe de fenouil, tranché mince
  • 1 branche de céleri, hachée
  • 1 feuille de laurier
  • 1/4 c. à thé de graines de fenouil
  • 1 boîte de haricots blancs (cannelini, par exemple), AVEC le liquide
  • 1 tasse de tomates, hachées en petits cubes
  • 1/2 c. à thé de sel de mer
  • 1 c. à soupe de sauce tamari ou soya
  • 1/4 tasse de lait de coconut
  • Ciboulette hachée, pour servir

Instructions

Dans une casserole moyenne à fond épais, faire chauffer l’huile à feu moyen. Ajouter l’oignon et le fenouil, et faire revenir 4 minutes. Ajouter le céleri et l’ail, et faire revenir 2 minutes de plus. Ajouter la feuille de laurier, les graines de fenouil, la boîte de haricots AVEC le liquide, les tomates, le sel de mer et la sauce tamari ou soya. Bien mélanger, couvrir et laisser mijoter 5 minutes. Retirer le couvercle, mélanger et laisser mijoter 5 minutes de plus, à découvert. Retirer du feu, incorporer le lait de coconut et ajuster les assaisonnements, si nécessaire. Servir sur des patates douces en purée ou du couscous. Garnir de ciboulette, si désiré. Bon appétit!

Keywords: fenouil, haricots, ragoût

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