This serves two as a lunch with another salad, crusty bread, and, maybe some ham. Don’t try to make this for larger quantities as the fennel will not fit into the frying pan.
If you can run to sherry for this salad it’s worth it – the nuttiness goes particularly well with the walnuts…bear in mind, you can also drink the sherry! Serve cold with some marcona almonds….
Recipe for fennel with orange glazed with honey and sherry
- 25g/½ cup walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 2 bulbs of fennel
- olive oil for frying plus a knob or two of butter
- 120ml/½ cup dry-medium sherry (ideally Tio Pepe) – or dry or rosé vermouth would also do
- juice, zest, and remaining flesh of a medium orange
- 1 tbsp of the bitterest honey you can find – chestnut is good
- 75g/3 oz soft goats’ cheese
- Put a platter in to warm.
- In a large frying pan dry fry the walnuts and fennel seeds.
- Meanwhile, cut off the green fronds – set aside.
- Cut each fennel bulb lengthwise into eight.
- Take the walnuts and fennel seeds out and set aside.
- Add the olive oil and butter (the butter gives a richness, as well as a nuttiness which ties in well with the walnuts) to the frying pan.
- Add the fennel to the frying pan, and fry at a high enough heat to get them golden – each side will take three or four minutes. Turn until all sides are done.
- Reduce the heat and add the sherry or vermouth.
- Zest the orange (put with the walnuts), and then add the juice to the frying pan.
- Turn the orange flesh out of the peel, cut into bite-sized pieces, and add to frying pan.
- Add the honey, stir to dissolve.
- Arrange the fennel and orange on the warmed serving platter.
- Increase the heat under the frying pan and reduce the sauce until it is a syrupy consistency.
- Meanwhile dot the goats’ cheese around on top of the fennel.
- Spoon over the reduced syrup, and garnish with the fennel fronds and seeds, the walnuts, and the orange zest.