Go ahead, buy some fresh fennel. You may just like it.
Chef Matt Cooper of Mott Community College calls fennel, the most underused vegetable. He likes its liquorish-type flavor. "It also smells like the spice annise, but not overpowering", says Matt. (Your breath might be from all the garlic Matt uses in his sauce, though)
Cooper uses fennel in his pasta sauce, which he makes from scatch. He also makes the pasta fresh, too. Cooper says you can find those pasta makers at garage sales and can usually pick one up for less than 25 dollars. Nothing quite like fresh pasta.
Here's his recipe for fresh pasta: 2 eggs, olive oil, 2 cups of flour,heavy whip basil
And for the sauce: tomatoes, fresh fennel red pepper, parsley, garlic, olive oil and yess some chopped fennel.
Here's more on fennel: http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/roasted_fennel/
You can be a student in Matt's class at Mott Community College by starting here http://www.mcc.edu/