Fennel belongs to the umble family, alongside carrots, parsley, and dill! The whole plant is edible, and each part has a slightly different flavor. The bulb has a mild licorice flavor that becomes milder with cooking.
Remove stems from the bulb and store each unwashed and wrapped in a damp towel in the fridge. They will last about a week, potentially longer.
Rinse bulb thoroughly and cut into quarters. Remove stem if it seems woody. The bulb can be steamed, sauteed, baked, or grilled. The stems tend to be tough and a bit stringy, but make a flavorful addition to vegetable stocks. Fennel leaves can be used in soups and salads, and are a substitute for dill in many recipes.