12 to 16 baby fennel bulbs
5 Tbsp. olive oil
4 shallots cut into rings
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
½ red bell pepper, diced
2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and cubed
1 scant tsp. tomato paste
5 Tbsp. water
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)
Chopped fresh chervil or flat-leaf parsley for garnish

Trim off the feathery tops and the stalks from each fennel bulb, leaving about 1 ½ inches of stalks intact
Discard the stalks and tops (or reserve for another use)
Remove any bruised areas and trim the base of the core
In a large, wide saucepan or deep fry pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil
Add the shallots and sauté for about 2 minutes
Add the fennel bulbs, stir to coat with the oil, and add the garlic and bell pepper
Toss the vegetables, then add the tomatoes, tomato paste, water, and sea salt and pepper
Stir with a knife, 12 to 15 minutes
Transfer the contents of the pan to a serving dish and sprinkle with the chervil

photo credit: William Sonoma