Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: NONE
5 radishes for garnish (optional)
2 medium fennel
1 can (6 ounces) black olives
1 jar (6 ounces) green olive
1 can (2 ounces) anchovies in oil
Cut the leaves and roots off the radishes, wash them, and make 5 or 6 small incisions around the perimeter on one end. Place them in a small bowl of cold water, with the cut side down, and let stand for 10 minutes so the cuts will open up and make the radishes look like flowers.
Meanwhile, remove the dark ends from the fennels and cut the stems about 1-1/2 inches long. Then cut the fennels lengthwise into quarters, then cut each quarter in half again and wash them. Let them drain on a paper towel while opening cans and jar, draining and rinsing the olives.
Fennel is a winter vegetable that takes me back to happy childhood holiday seasons spent with my mother's grandparents -- who raised her from the time she was 8 years old.
We sat by the fire in the large kitchen after dinner with the cousins, uncles, and aunts, listening to the elders' stories. Later on, our great grandma brought out the large platter with the olives and fennel, along with baskets of mandarins, oranges, walnuts, chestnuts, dried figs, and dates.