I’ve got a totally delicious dinner recipe to share with you today. A prawn and fennel spaghetti, so rich, so tomatoey and so satisfying as soon as you’ve finished you’ll be thinking about when you can make it again! Raw fennel really packs a punch. It’s flavour is reminiscent of anise or liquorice and it can really divide people. If you’re firmly in the not-a-fan camp or even the I’m-not-sure camp, I’m confident this recipe is going to swing you straight over to the man-fennel-is-delicious camp. When cooked, here in aromatic garlic oil and butter and chilli, its strong flavour mellows, takes on herbal vibes and totally compliments the rich tomato, zesty lemon and juicy prawns.
I find that fennel is one of those medium FODMAP ingredients that people on the diet tend to avoid because it’s often on ‘don’t eat’ or high FODMAP lists. But, fennel is low FODMAP is decent portion sizes and a great ingredient to include in recipes. I love also love that it cooks similar to onions in a pan, making it a great base for fragrant dishes.
2 tablespoons garlic infused olive oil
80g of fennel, bulb finely sliced, fronds reserved
1/2 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
2 anchovy fillets (optional)
75ml white wine
150g tinned plum tomatoes
150ml FODMAP friendly veggie or fish stock (I used Massel 7’s)
150g peeled large raw prawns
160g gluten free spaghetti
Zest and juice of half a lemon
Small handful of basil, leaves picked
Heat the garlic oil and butter in a frying pan on a low-medium heat. Add the fennel and sliced chilli and sauté for 5 or so minutes, until the fennel is starting to soften. Add in the anchovy fillets if using and cook for a further few minutes until they start to melt away. Pour in the wine and bring to the boil. Cook until the wine is reduced by about half, then add the plum tomatoes and stock. Season, bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes or so, until the fennel is tender. Add the prawns for 3-5 minutes until cooked through.
Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cook the spaghetti according to pack instructions/until al dente (especially important with gluten free pasta as it can go mushy!). Drain, reserving a mug of the starchy cooking water. Toss the pasta through the sauce, adding as much of the pasta water as you like to loosen it. Divide the pasta between two bowls, then tear over the basil leaves and finely grate over the lemon zest. Squeeze over a little lemon juice and scatter over the fennel fronds.