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Tomato Fennel Soup

No recipe image available.An elegant purée of tomato and fennel soup with Pernod.

Recipe Ingredients:

3 fennel bulbs, tops removed and set aside
1 cup unsalted butter
1 yellow onion, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced - divided use
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 (28-ounce) cans chopped Italian style tomatoes, undrained
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup Pernod

Cooking Directions:

  1. Coarsely chop 2 of the fennel bulbs. Finely chop the third; set aside.
  2. Melt 1 cup butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Add coarsely chopped fennel, onion and 4 of the garlic cloves; cook until limp, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add tomatoes with their liquid and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
  3. Process vegetable mixture in small batches in a food processor, and then pass through a food mill. Return to pan.
  4. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add finely chopped fennel and sauté with remaining 2 cloves garlic until softened, about 5 minutes.
  5. Chop leafy tops of fennel. Add sautéed fennel, leafy tops, chicken broth and Pernod to tomato mixture. Simmer until heated through, about 5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Makes 8 servings.