Place of Origin
Finocchio marino is a sea fennel that grows wild along the rocky coast of southern Apulia, in particular along the coast of the Adriatic sea close to Santa Maria di Leuca, and the Ionian sea, north west coast of the peninsula.
It is a plant with fleshy leaves, a typical aroma of fennel and a salt concentration similar to that of the sea, properties that allow this plant to survive in rocky habitats along the coast.
This sea fennel is picked up manually by cutting it off from the plants that grow not far from the shoreline.
The twigs are then cleaned out of the fibrous part, washed well and left open to dry under he sun for half a day.
When ready they are placed in airtight glass jars and covered with white vinegar. They should be left to mature for few months before consuming.
Sea fennel is used for salads, to stuff sandwiches or even as a side dish.