Marinated Carrots with Fennel Foam

170531 Carrots with Fennel-5470

A healthy, tasty and colourful starter! Sometimes, I add a few drops of brandy to the foam (a little goes a very long way) which adds a rounder flavour. Possible a drop of vinegar would have the same effect?

2 large carrots, thinly sliced (best to use a mandolin slicer)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt

Some fresh spinach leaves on the plate to serve on.

1. Heat oven on high grill setting
2. Toss the carrot slices with juice, oil and salt. Leave for 30 minutes.
3. Place the carrot slices on an oven sheet
4. Roast under the grill for about 10 minutes, until slightly charred and caramelized

Fennel Foam:
1 fennel bulb, tips and “grassy tops” only
Water
Ice wate170600 Carrots with Fennel-5447r

A few drops agave syrup
Dash of salt
½ tsp olive oil

½ tsp lecithin

1. Cut off the tops (including the grassy parts) from the fennel bulb. The bulb can be saved for use another time.
2. Bring some water to boil and blanch the tops for 30 seconds.
3. Remove the tops from the boiling water and put in an ice bath (to secure the green colour).
4. When cool, place in blender with a 2 table spoons of water. Add some more water if needed. You want a smooth, thick mix but do not over blend.
5. Add the syrup, salt and oil. Blend briefly to mix.
6. Set aside until you are ready to make the foam (may be prepared and kept in the fridge until the following day)
7. Mix in the lecithin.
8. Pour the mix into a large shallow container. Using a handheld blender, incorporate air into the mix, thus creating a foam. Might take a few minutes! Spoon off the foam into a separate bowl and repeat until you have a bowl of foam.

Serve the carrots with the foam on top.

Alternative to the foam:
If you’d rather make a fennel cream to go with the carrots, you can either mix in a couple of tablespoons of coconut cream or some double cream. No lecithin. By choosing the coconut cream you will have less of the fennel taste and, instead, some coconut flavour which goes wonderfully with the carrots.

(On this photo I have sprinkled some black, Hawaiian salt on top.)

Marinated Monkfish, Caramelized Leek, Crushed Cauliflower, Roasted Parsnips Crisps, Mushrooms with a hint of garlic and Creamy Fennel Puree

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Inspired by the beautiful autumn colours, I created this meal which will take a bit of time in the kitchen but is not so complicated to make. The amazing flavours of the ingredients are brought out by the sweetness of the orange and the saltiness of both the chorizo and the cheese.

Serves 4

Monkfish:
600g monkfish fillets
Juice from 1 orange
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp Olive oil

Caramelized Leek:
2 leeks, finely chopped
2 large shallots, finely chopped
100 g chorizo, cut into small pieces
Juice from 1 orange
½ tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper

Crushed Cauliflower:
2 medium size heads, stalks discarded, flowers separated
Salt
3 tbsp olive oil
150g Parmesan cheese, grated

Roasted Parsnip Crisps:
3 parsnips
Salt and pepper
Olive oil

Mushrooms:
500g closed cup mushrooms, thinly sliced

Olive oil to fry in
1 small garlic clove, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil

Fennel Puree:
5 fennel bulbs, cut into small pieces
Salt and pepper
Juice from 1 lemon
3-4 tbsp Greek youghurt

Monkfish:

  1. Cut the monkfish into serving portions
  2. Marinate the fish in the orange juice, oil and salt/pepper in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Oven at 200C
  4. Place the monkfish and the marinade in an ovenproof dish.
  5. Bake for about 20 minutes, baste often with the liquid.
  6. When done, cover and let rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Caramelized leeks:

  1. Sauté the shallots and leeks in olive oil until soft. Add the chorizo and sauté another few minutes.
  2. Add the orange juice and let simmer for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Season with salt and pepper.

Crushed Cauliflower:

  1. Oven at 200C
  2. Place the cauliflower pieces on oven tray and sprinkle with a bit of salt and some olive oil.
  3. Roast in the oven until soft and slightly coloured. About 30 minutes.
  4. Leave on oven tray and crush with potato masher. This can be prepared in advance.
  5. Before serving, roast in 200C another 10 minutes. Mix with the Parmesan cheese, stir until melted and serve.

Parsnips:

  1. Slice very thinly on a mandolin, sprinkle with salt and a little bit of olive oil.
  2. Roast in oven in a thin layer for 15 min (200C)

Mushrooms:

  1. Sauté the mushroom until done and all liquid has evaporated.
  2. Add the crushed garlic to 2 tbsp olive oil and add to the pan. Fry for a few more minutes.

Fennel Puree:

  1. Oven at 200C
  2. Roast small pieces of fennel in oven until soft.
  3. Puree with handheld mixer.
  4. Add the lemon juice
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Lastly, for a creamier texture, add the yoghurt.