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RocW | 13:35 Tue 04th May 2021 | Food & Drink
18 Answers
Has anyone noticed that fennel does not have any flavour any more? We've bought fennel from just about every supermarket and it has no taste whatsoever. Is it worth growing it yourself?


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Try wild fennel to see if there is a difference -
I get mine from Tesco and it has adequate flavour. Any stronger I would eat it.
*wouldn't* eat it
It should have a lovely aniseed flavour. It is an interesting plant to grow with very long ferns very easy too.
From seed Chef?
Yes, very easy!
Question Author
Many thanks for all your answers. I've eaten fennel for many years but it seems that for the last few years it has been sadly lacking in flavour. I made a dish over the weekend that had a whole bulb of fennel in it and there was no taste of fennel whatsoever. When we ate the leftovers, I added fennel seeds so that I could taste how it should have been. I've allocated some space in the garden to grow my own.
Cool Chef, I'll buy some seeds :-)

Thanks for this post Roc.
I find that Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and lots of other stuff is rather tasteless nowadays. Some explanations:- 1 They have been bred tasteless to cater for modern tastes; snowflakes won't eat their greens if they have a taste. 2 We are growing older and losing our sense of taste. Wrinklies can't taste anything cos their tongues are like leather strops. 3 Covid.
Had some fennel with a nice piece of salmon yesterday. Tasted just as it always has, as far as i'm concerned.
Or people are just over cooking everything.
The variety of Brussels sprouts sold in the supermarkets mostly has been developed to have a milder taste than the ones we ate (or refused to eat) in our childhood.

As a result, more people are eating them.

You can always grow the older varieties yourself or find them at farmers markets.
Mamy; missed apostrophe there! :-)
Just draw it in chuck.
It might be seasonal.

Eat strawberries in the summer, and they can be gorgeous. Eat them in winter, and they can be like polystyrene.
Question Author
Wow! Thanks for all your answers. I think Atheist might be right. Although I gave up smoking 15 years ago, I used to smoke 40 per day plus cigars and a pipe. I guess several cups of strong coffee a day doesn't help either.
The fennel we got from Waitrose last week had plenty of flavour and smell when raw...but got less intense when cooked. But other things do that, too...celery for example.
As allotment holders for over 40 years we find that no shop bought veg tastes anything like the homegrown variety eaten in season. Carrots and tomatoes are probably the worst offenders, even if you buy organic expensive ones "grown for flavour". I can't comment specifically about fennel as I loathe the stuff.

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