Pan-Roasted Fennel, Carrots and Pearl Onions with Dill-Almond Pesto

Pan-roasted fennel, carrots and pear onions topped with dill-almond pesto.

Emily Suzanne McDonald

Don’t throw away those greens! Fennel fronds and carrot tops make delicious pesto for their root counterparts, and they accentuate the flavors of the vegetable – root-to-tip cooking at its finest.

Serves | 8 to 10 |

Pan-Roasted Fennel, Carrots and Pearl Onions

  • 3 Tbsp olive oil, plus more for pans
  • 3 lbs carrots, greens attached, cleaned and sliced ¼-inch thick in deep diagonals
  • 2 large fennel bulbs, fronds attached, sliced from base to top in ½-inch slices
  • 3 cups frozen pearl onions, thawed in refrigerator and patted dry
  • 1 Tbsp high-quality balsamic vinegar
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dill-Almond Pesto

  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh dill
  • ½  cup loosely packed fennel fronds
  • ½ cup loosely packed carrot greens
  • 1 cup blanched almonds
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic
  • ½ tsp chile flakes
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

| Preparation – Pan-Roasted Fennel, Carrots and Pearl Onions | Preheat oven to 400˚F.

Brush 2 lipped sheet pans with 1 tablespoon olive oil each. In a large bowl, add carrots, fennel and onions; add olive oil and balsamic vinegar and toss to coat. Season generously with salt and pepper. Divide vegetables onto pans, spreading out into single layers and leaving space between. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, rotating pans halfway and stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender and caramelized.

| Preparation – Dill-Almond Pesto | In the bowl of a food processor, place dill, fennel fronds, carrot greens, almonds, garlic and chile flakes; pulse to combine. Stream in olive oil with motor running and continue to blend until pesto reaches desired texture; season with salt and pepper.

| To Serve | Arrange vegetables family-style on a large serving platter or divide onto plates; top with pesto and serve immediately. 

Shannon Weber is the creator, author and photographer behind the award-winning blogaperiodictableblog.com, and her work has appeared on websites such as Bon Appétit, Serious Eats and America’s Test Kitchen.