Inspired by Paul Virant--the pickle guy?--and borrowing the use of star anise and citrus peel from a Martha Stewart recipe, these pickled baby fennel are going to make squisiti antipasti, come fall.
3 small bunches baby fennel
1 qt. white vinegar
1 cup water
6 Tbs. kosher salt
peel of one lemon
2 whole star anise
1. Wash fennel well, making sure to pry open stalks to release dirt.
2. Trim fennel tops and pack baby fennel, lemon peel and star anise into one sterilized quart-size jar.
3. Boil vinegar, liquid and salt until salt is dissolved (five minutes).
4. Pour hot liquid over fennel, close lid and process in a hot water canner for 10 minutes.