fennel

noun
fen·​nel | \ˈfe-nᵊl \

Definition of fennel 

1 : a perennial Eurasian herb (Foeniculum vulgare) that has clusters of small yellow flowers and aromatic leaves and seeds and includes several cultivated forms: such as

a : one (F. vulgare dulce) grown especially for its edible leaves and seeds that are used as a seasoning

b : florence fennel

2 : the edible parts (such as the seeds and leaves) of fennel

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Did You Know?

A perennial aromatic herb of the parsley family, fennel is native to southern Europe and Asia Minor and cultivated in the US, Britain, and temperate areas of Eurasia. The blanched shoots are eaten as a vegetable. The greenish brown to yellowish brown oblong-oval seeds smell and taste similar to anise. The seeds and extracted oil are used for scenting soaps and perfumes and for flavoring candies, liqueurs, medicines, and foods, particularly pastries, sweet pickles, and fish.

Examples of fennel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Add carrots, fennel and parsnip and cook, stirring, 3 minutes. Tiffani Thiessen, Good Housekeeping, "Creamy Chicken Potpies," 9 Oct. 2018 An accompanying aioli is spiked with fennel pollen, the licorice fairy dust believed to have healing powers by ancient civilizations. Grace Wong, chicagotribune.com, "11 vegetarian and vegan restaurants worth checking out," 29 Jan. 2018 Add the onion, carrots, fennel and 2 tsp of the garlic to the saucepan and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Chicken Osso Buco," 15 Jan. 2015 In a large bowl, combine the onion — mustard green mixture with the bread, raisins, and fennel pollen and stir until well mixed. Tyler Florence, House Beautiful, "Tyler Florence's Porchetta Recipe," 2 Jan. 2011 In a large bowl, combine the beef, pork fat, bread-crumb purée, ricotta, Parmesan, parsley, garlic, anchovy paste, chile powder, caraway seeds, ground fennel seeds, salt, and fish sauce. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "Be Ambitious This Thanksgiving: 3 Bold Recipes From One of L.A.’s Most Talked About Restaurants," 2 Nov. 2018 Filled with toasted fennel seeds, cornichons, and golden raisins, these sandwiches are bursting with flavor in every bite. Anna Helm Baxter, Country Living, "Salami Sandwiches with Cauliflower Relish," 31 Oct. 2018 The wheat dough Nilsson is working with includes golden syrup, aniseed, fennel seeds and coriander seeds. Howie Kahn, WSJ, "Magnus Nilsson’s ‘The Nordic Baking Book’ is a Bible for Bakers," 12 Oct. 2018 Brush each slice with syrup mixture and sprinkle with crushed fennel seeds and pinch black pepper. Tiffani Thiessen, Good Housekeeping, "Bloody Caesar with Maple-Fennel Bacon," 9 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fennel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of fennel

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for fennel

Middle English fenel, from Old English finugl, from Vulgar Latin *fenuculum, from Latin feniculum fennel, irregular diminutive of fenum hay

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Dictionary Entries near fennel

fenman

Fenn

fennec

fennel

fennel-flower

fennel seed

fennel water

Statistics for fennel

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for fennel

The first known use of fennel was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for fennel

fennel

noun
fen·​nel | \ˈfen-ᵊl \

Medical Definition of fennel 

: a perennial European herb (Foeniculum vulgare) of the carrot family (Umbelliferae) introduced into North America and cultivated for its aromatic seeds and its foliage

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More from Merriam-Webster on fennel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fennel

Spanish Central: Translation of fennel

Nglish: Translation of fennel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fennel for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about fennel

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