Fennel

Fighting Mild Digestive Disorders With Fennel

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), a member of the parsley family, is a plant with yellowish flowers that grows up to 8 feet tall. This large herb radiates a sweet, warm licorice odor. While fennel is native to Southern Europe, commercial fennel usually comes from Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Egypt, or China. Each part of the fennel plant is edible-the seeds, leaves, stalks, and the bulb.

Fennel doubles as a vegetable and a spice. The sweet-flavored tasty stems, which resemble celery, have a pleasant aniselike flavor. They can be diced into soups and salads, or used for savoring stews and stir-fry vegetables. The feathery leaves can also be used to flavor vegetable dishes.

Multiple Uses

The fruit, or seeds, are greenish yellow-brown in color, and vary in size up to 3&Mac218;8 inch (one centimeter) long. The seeds are oval in shape, slightly curved with ridges. The grooved seeds can be used both for flavoring purposes as well as for medicinal purposes. The seeds can be used in bread, entr