Slow braised fennel with orange recipe

Fennel is one of those vegetables like aubergines which seem to be reasonably good and accessible all year round. I have had some amazing local British fennel in July, delicious simply shaved and marinated with lemon and sea salt.

By slow braising, the fennel becomes tenderised, and is delicious served with some of the cooking liquor, melting blue cheese and toasted pumpkin seeds. The basic recipe is vegan and gluten free.

Serves 6

Equipment needed: a medium oven dish approx. 25-30cm diameter with a 5cm depth


  • 3 large bulbs fennel
  • 400ml orange juice
  • 400ml
  • Light vegetarian stock/water
  • 2 oranges, fine zested and juiced
  • 2 cloves garlic, fine chopped
  • 2cms (40gm) fresh ginger root, finely chopped
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground fennel
  • 1 heaped teaspoon ground fenugreek
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 100ml olive oil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Pre-heat oven to 150ºC

First slice the fennel lengthways from stalk to base and place face up in an oven dish

In a large bowl thoroughly mix together all the other ingredients and pour over the fennel bulbs so all submerged. Cover the pan with aluminium foil (or with a lid) and seal up the sides to vacuum the fennel and liquor.

Braise at 150ºC for one and a half hours to one hour forty five minutes, until the fennel is tender but just a little al dente. Serve immediately with 100gm blue cheese melting over the fennel or cool and keep refridgerated for up to five days and re-heat when required.