This is the type of recipe that you keep for when you have guests over, let's say for ... Christmas! It takes quite some time to make; preparation is definitely doable but it needs some time on the stove. But it can totally be made beforehand, so that makes it manageable. My man loved it!
Ingredients for 2 persons
- 1 Italian Tomato broth
- ½ g safran powder or 6 safran threads
- 200ml water
- 1 tsp butter
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 0.5 tsp aniseed
- 1 yellow onion, in small cubes
- 1 clove of garlic, finely diced
- 1 small carrot, in small cubes
- ½ parsnip, in small cubes
- 1 potato
- ¼ fennel bulb
- 65g white beans
- 125ml dry white wine
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- Optional: 1 nori leaf, in small pieces
- ¼ fennel bulb
- Fresh thyme and dill
- 2 pieces of sourdough bread
- Optional: Zest of ¼ orange
- 1 egg yolk
- ½ tbsp lemon juice
- 65ml olive oil
- 65ml rapeseed
- 1 garlic clove
- Salt & pepper
Heat the oven to 220°.
Heat a cast iron saucepan over medium heat. Melt butter and add the fennel seed, anise seed, onion and garlic. Sauté for several minutes until the onion has softened and glazed. Add carrots, parsnips and fennel and after a few minutes add the white wine. Simmer for 5 minutes and then add the potato, broth, saffron, nori and thyme. Stir well and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
Cut the remaining fennel into 4 pieces. Place them on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper. Bake for 20 minutes until soft and slightly burnt along the sides.
Finally, when the cooked vegetables are soft, add the beans and simmer for a few more minutes before serving.
Making Aioli: Whisk egg yolks* and lemon juice in a metal bowl to blend well. Whisking constantly (by hand with a balloon whisk) while drizzling in the oil very slowly, 1 teaspoonful at a time, until the sauce is thickened. Stir in finely chopped garlic and season the aioli with lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Serve the soup in wide bowls, top with roasted fennel, dill, a dollop of aioli, orange zest and a piece of sourdough bread.
Do you have some ideas for shops in your neighbourhood? Let us know!