Create a gorgeous, tasty gratin with roasted fennel and carrots for an ideal side. Pair it with simple roast chicken as an awesome meal any night of the week.
- 4 heads fennel ends trimmed
- 1 lb bag whole carrots peeled and ends trimmed
- 2 TB extra virgin olive oil divided
- 1 ½ tsp kosher salt divided
- 1 TB thyme divided
- 3 TB fresh grated pecorino cheese divided
- 1 TB orange juice
- 1 TB orange zest
Preheat oven to 400.Spray a 12x8 glass casserole with cooking spray. Slice fennel vertically into 1/3” thick slices (it’s ok if some pieces break apart). Place on a foil lined surface or cookie sheet. Drizzle 1 TB olive oil evenly across all fennel slices. Sprinkle evenly with 1 tsp salt. Reserve.
Slice carrots at a sharp angle into long, ¼” thick slices. Place in a large bowl and toss with remaining 1 TB olive oil and ½ tsp salt. Make one layer of fennel in casserole (use all the broken pieces in this layer for a pretty presentation). Sprinkle with 1 tsp thyme and 1 TB pecorino. Layer all carrots in diagonal rows on top of first fennel layer. Sprinkle with 1 tsp thyme and 1 TB pecorino.
Make final layer of fennel on top, arranging whole slices in an attractive pattern. Sprinkle with remaining 1 tsp thyme and 1 TB pecorino. Cover with foil and roast for 30 minutes to soften fennel. Remove foil and roast an additional 30-40 minutes or until veggies are browned and cooked through. Drizzle orange juice over the top and garnish with orange zest.
If your fennel came untrimmed, you can also reserve and chop some of the fronds for a pretty and tasty garnish