Fennel is one of the unsung heroes of the low-carb vegetable world. When raw, it has a crunch like celery and a surprisingly mild licorice-like flavor. When roasted, the sugars in fennel caramelize, and it takes on a deep sweetness while most of that licorice flavor fades into the background. The recipe below showcases the latter effect beautifully.
Roasted fennel is an ideal match for red meats, like pork roast or braised lamb shanks, but it works equally well alongside lighter proteins like chicken or fish. For this recipe, use only the bulb and not the frilly fronds. I like to trim those off and save them for other dishes, where they add lovely herbaceous notes.