You probably know that fennel is used in lots of italian food. For instance it's the reason my wife doesn't like italian sausage. It's also used in soups, pastas and sauces. You can braise the bulb of the fennel plant and serve it with a mustard sauce.
What I like to do, which is also considered italian to some degree is put fennel seeds on pizza. It just seems to add that little bit of kick you don't usually have. Not too much though or you'll be picking the little seeds out of your teeth for a while and the flavor can be overpowering. So next time you have pizza delivered, sprinkle some fennel seeds on a slice and see for yourself.