Sweet Fennel Sausage is Delicious…
This sweet fennel sausage recipe is: Paleo, Primal, Gluten Free, Low Carb and Wheat Belly friendly.
A couple days ago I received a very nice email from Wendy who had just started to follow the blog. She was reading the Sage Breakfast Sausage recipe I had created earlier in the week and she reached out to me with a request for a recipe. She told me that she had enjoyed a pizza so much due to the sweet fennel sausage that it had on it, but she was having a bit of a hard time recreating it. It sounded like a delicious project to me, so here we are today with a recipe for sweet fennel sausage that I hope she likes!
The sweetness in this recipe doesn’t come from sugar. In our correspondence, it was covered that sugar is out. Also, I’m following the Paleo guidelines so all refined sugar is out! The key to getting this recipe just a little sweet is to caramelize the fennel. This doesn’t mean to just lightly brown the fennel. It takes just a little while longer, but the fennel should be caramel in color before you are done cooking it.
When I was running our cooking school, there was quite a bit of hesitation when it came to dealing with fennel. It seems as though a lot of people just don’t like working with it or are completely unfamiliar. Fennel is a unique vegetable that can be used in so many different ways. Raw it has a very strong licorice flavor that can layer a ton of flavor into a salad. Fennel can be boiled, grilled, fried, steamed, caramelized, braised, roasted and even baked… each time taking on a different flavor profile. It really is fun to cook with.
The key concept with fennel is to remove the fronds and stalks for most recipes. The bulb is what is used most often. Splitting the bulb will reveal the core that needs to be removed. The rest can be sliced, quartered or whatever you need to do with it. The fronds are helpful for garnish or to add to salads. Other than that, there is not much to this tasty little vegetable.
QUICK COOKING TIP: When toasting the fennel seeds, take your time. Use a dry pan over medium high heat. The seeds will change from their greenish color to a light brown color very quickly once they begin to toast. Toasting fennel seeds changes the flavor profile completely, adding a nutty complexity to the recipe.
So let’s get moving on this sweet fennel sausage.
Sweet Fennel Sausage Recipe
Sweet Fennel Sausage Ingredients
- 1 LB Ground Pork
- 1 TSP Fresh Thyme chopped
- 1 Medium Fennel Bulb
- 2 TBSP organic or grass fed butter
- 1 TBSP Olive Oil
- 3 Cloves Roasted Garlic
- 1 TSP Fennel Seeds
- 1/4 TSP Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 TSP Kosher Salt
- Fresh Cracked Pepper
Toasting the Fennel Seeds
- Heat a dry pan over medium high heat.
- Add the fennel seeds and keep a close eye on them. When they begin to turn brown, stir to avoid burning.
- Once they have turned brown, remove from the heat and set aside.
Preparing the Fennel
- Cut off the fronds and stalks
- Slice the fennel through the middle from top to bottom
- Remove the core
- Slice the remaining fennel bulb thinly
- Using a heavy skillet, add the butter and olive oil. Heat over medium high heat until the butter is melted. Add the raw fennel and a pinch of kosher salt.
- Cook the fennel for 10 minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally until it begins to brown. Then reduce the heat to medium-low. Continue to cook until completely caramelized.
- Remove the fennel from the pan and rough chop.
Making the Sweet Sausage Fennel mixture
- In a bowl, add the pork, fennel, thyme, roasted garlic, toasted fennel seeds, balsamic vinegar, salt and 8-10 grinds of pepper.
- Mix until all the ingredients are incorporated.
- Make a small "tester" sausage patty. Cook thoroughly and adjust the seasonings.
Cooking the Sweet Fennel Sausage
- Okay, so make up a bunch of sausage patties. The shouldn't be too thick otherwise they will take forever to cook through.
- In a heavy bottom pan, heat some olive oil over medium high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add in the sausage patties.
- Cover the pan. Cook for 4-5 minutes. Flip the sausage patties with tongs and recover. Cook for another 4-5 minutes or until cooked through.
- Serve hot and enjoy!
PLEASE NOTE: The nutritional data is provided by NutriFox and may not be 100% accurate.
Final Thoughts on the Sweet Fennel Sausage Recipe:
What a happy discovery. I don’t think that I’ve ever experienced sweet fennel sausage before. The flavor is really rounded and deep, with the salty playing nicely against the sweetness of the fennel and balsamic vinegar. The toasted fennel seeds add a nuttiness that was the finishing touch to this recipe.
I would like to extend a thank you to Wendy for suggesting this recipe. It has given me so many ideas from different breakfast dishes (think frittata or mini-quiche) to soups and new appetizer ideas. Our friends who were here helping taste thought that this would be the perfect addition to pizza or a delicious calzone. I couldn’t agree more. Just delicious.
If you’re looking for another homemade sausage recipe, you’ve come to the right place! Check out this awesome Sage Breakfast Sausage Recipe. So delicious, and it works in perfectly with the Butternut Squash and Sausage Appetizer. However you make it, homemade sausage is the best!
If you like the look of this sweet fennel sausage, let me know!