Michael Chiarello’s Fennel Spice Rub

I told this story elsewhere on my blog, about a Cassoulet I tried from one of Michael Chiarello‘s recipes. Well, frankly, the Cassoulet was a big hiss-boo. What wasn’t was the Brussels Sprouts (just one component of the overly complicated Cassoulet) sprinkled with this fantastic Fennel Spice Rub. Out of this world fantastic!

Michael Chiarello's Fennel Spice Rub
Michael Chiarello’s Fennel Spice Rub

When I was putting that Cassoulet together, I kept nibbling on the Brussels Sprouts and had to remake the entire batch!

I sprinkle this Fennel Spice Rub on vegetables, especially on Brussels Sprouts, sometimes on chicken breast, hamburgers or pork chops, and on pita chips. I use it also in my Spice Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Rhubarb Cranberry Compote. Who would have thought that Rhubarb, Fennel and Coriander would be such a fantastic counterpoint to each other?

Michael Chiarello's Fennel Spice Rub
Michael Chiarello’s Fennel Spice Rub

My newest experiment with this fantastic rub is the Chicken & Ricotta Meatballs used for so many recipes, including Italian Wedding Soup.

Heck, it pretty goes on anything I have on hand when I happen to see the jar of magic in the cupboard. And I’m not even a huge fennel fan!

Chicken Ricotta Meatballs with Michael Chiarello's Fennel Spice Rub
Chicken Ricotta Meatballs with Michael Chiarello’s Fennel Spice Rub

Michael Chiarello's Fennel Spice Rub

  • Servings: abt 1 1/2 cups
  • Difficulty: easy
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  • 1 cup fennel seeds
  • 3 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons white peppercorns *
  • 3 tablespoons grey salt (I use sea salt or kosher – see conversion chart)

Toast whole spices until just fragrant in a dry skillet.  Let cool, then grind.  (If you don’t let them cool, they will gum up.)  Mix together and use it to sprinkle on any manner of things.

* if you can’t find white peppercorns, use about a tablespoon of powdered white pepper. Black pepper does not give the same flavor to the spice rub.

If you’d like to see more of my spice & herb blends, check out Spice, Herb & Flavor Packet Substitutes. I’m adding as I go along!

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