Roasted Fennel with Cherry Tomatoes and Olives

Adapted from Jamie Oliver who knows how useful a glug (his word) or two of wine is to a roasting pan.  You won’t believe the flavors—deep and intense, yet mellow.  The aroma is enough to drive the household mad.  This is the ticket for anyone who shies away from the strong licorice scent of raw fennel.  You won’t detect a trace here.

Serves 4


  • 1 large fennel bulb
  • 1 large onion, cut into one inch cubes
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3/4 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1 large handful pitted kalamata olives
  • 1 small handful fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled, smashed and sliced


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Remove stalks from fennel and slice into 1/2 inch pieces.  Place in a roasting pan.  Cut fennel bulbs into quarters, then cut quarters in half.  Slice those into one inch cubes.  Place on the roasting pan with onion and fennel stalks.  Toss with olive oil to lightly coat.  Add wine to the pan, and season the vegetables with 1/2 teaspoon salt and a bit of freshly ground pepper.  Place pan in the oven for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove pan from the oven, turn the vegetables with a spatula, then add the tomatoes, olives, thyme and garlic to the pan.  Place pan back in the oven.
  4. Roast until the fennel is tender and lightly browned, about 30 minutes.  Turn all the vegetables once more, during the last 10 minutes of cooking.  Press lightly on the tomatoes to release some of their juice.
  5. Before serving taste for seasoning, and add more salt and pepper as needed.  Be sure to scrape the caramelized goo off the pan with the vegetables—there’s lots of concentrated flavors tucked in there.
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