Remove the outer stalks of the fennel bulbs and wash and dry the bulbs. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan. Add the bulbs, sprinkle with salt, and simmer for 30 minutes. Add water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 1 to 1½ hours, or until the bulbs are tender to the touch.
Slice each bulb in half lengthwise, add salt and pepper to taste, and serve hot sprinkled with the fennel leaves.
© 1990 Mireille Johnston estate. All rights reserved.