---------- Recipe via Meal-Master (tm) v8.02
  
       Title: VELOUTE OF FENNEL
  Categories: Vegetables
       Yield: 10 servings
  
      10 tb Unsalted butter
       6 lg Heads fennel
            - trimmed and thinly sliced
       6 tb Unbleached all-purpose flour
       8 c  Chicken stock
            - preferably homemade
       4    Egg yolks
     3/4 c  Whipping cream
            Salt
            Pepper
            Chopped fresh chives
            - for garnish
  
   MELT 4 TABLESPOONS OF BUTTER in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat.
   Add the fennel, cover and slowly braise, stirring occasionally, until the
   fennel is completely softened and lightly browned, about 30 minutes.
   Transfer it to a food processor fitted with a steel blade and puree. Set
   aside. Melt the remaining butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium-low
   heat. Add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until the flour is cooked
   but still light in color, 3-to-4 minutes. Slowly add the stock to the flour
   mixture, stirring constantly. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat to
   low and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Stir in the fennel, then pass the
   soup through a fine strainer, if desired. (The soup may be prepared ahead
   of time, to this point.) Just before serving, bring the soup to a simmer.
   Combine the egg yolks and cream in a small bowl, and beat well. Gradually
   add about 2 cups of soup to the yolk mixture. Slowly blend the yolk mixture
   back into the remaining soup. Be careful not to let the soup boil or the
   eggs will curdle. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle into warm
   bowls and garnish with chives.
  
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