½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
3 fennel bulbs, white parts only, thinly sliced
1 medium sweet onion, sliced
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
5 pounds potatoes, peeled and quartered
½ cup heavy cream
1 cup sour cream
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
In a large deep skillet over medium-high heat, melt half of the butter. Add the fennel and the onion, then saute until just beginning to brown, about 4 to 5 minutes. Pour in the chicken broth and bring up to a boil. Reduce to a gentle simmer and cover. Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the fennel is very tender.
Meanwhile, place the potatoes in a large pot and fill with enough water to cover. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork. Drain, then return the potatoes to the pot.
Add the braised fennel along with its cooking liquid to the potatoes. Add the cream, sour cream and remaining butter, then mash until chunky-smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
Cook's note: To cutdown day-of cooking, braise the fennel and onions as directed, then refrigerate them (in the pan) until ready to cook the potatoes. Gently reheat the fennel mixture on the stovetop, then add to the cooked potatoes as directed.
@Recipe nutrition:Nutrition values per serving: 310 calories, 15 g fat (9 g saturated), 40 g carbohydrates, 5 g fiber, 5 g protein, 40 mg cholesterol, 65 mg sodium.
Alison Ladman for The Associated Press