Lightly roasted fennel soup

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We had a lovely bulb of fennel with tops attached in our veg bag this week, and it was a miserable old day yesterday so I wanted something soothing and warm for lunch rather than my usual salad. Soup always springs to mind when I’m in that kind of mood, and this refreshing, filling concoction really hit the spot. After a bit of research I also discovered that fennel is rich in antioxidants, vitamin C, potassium and fibre – what more of an excuse do you need to make this tasty recipe?

Ingredients (for 2-4 servings):
600ml fresh stock
Bulb of fennel (& tops if you have)
Med sized swede (peeled & cut into 6)
Med sized red onion
Large carrot or two small ones
Freshly ground sea salt & black pepper
1-2 tbsp olive oil
(optional) knob of butter or drizzle of ghee or olive oil

Method:
– if you’re making stock on the same day as the soup, keep hold of the onion and carrot and add to the proceedings at the end when you are blending

– when you’re ready to start cooking your soup preheat the oven to 180 and generously grease a baking tray with olive oil

– wash your bulb and remove the outer layer if it’s particularly tough. Lay the fennel tops on the baking tray and place the bulb on top. Scatter the sweet potato around it

– if you do not have carrot and onion from the stock, then prep now and add to the baking tray. Peel and halve the onion, and top & tail and peel the carrot. You’ll need to chop it fairly small as carrot takes longer to cook than the other veg. I chop mine into large batons as I would if I were prepping crudités

– give the veg a liberal sprinkling of salt and pepper, and put the knob of butter if you are using on top of the fennel. Cook for 30 mins

– remove from the oven and place in your trusty blender or food processor. Add hot stock and whiz on high until you get the consistency you enjoy

 

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