I have been patiently (not really!) waiting for my fennel to mature so I can start to add it to family meals. I adore it’s sweet flavour when baked and aniseed flavour when raw. I love that you can utilise the leaves, stem and bulb in cooking. Yesterday I finally harvested the first of our little crop and created this dairy free gratin. It was worth the wait. A combination of sweet potato, lemon zest, garlic (always), and Almond Milk topped with almond slivers and sour dough croutons made a tasty addition to our family meal table.
Fennel is an ingredient many children have not tried but when it is baked you may be surprised at how much they enjoy the sweet flavour. It is much milder in flavour than when it is raw. If they give it a try and decide they are not yet a fan, nothing is lost, there is more for you to enjoy.
This is my vegetarian recipe for fennel and sweet potato gratin. I hope that you and your family enjoy it.
- 3 cloves garlic
- zest of one lemon
- ½ tablespoon coconut oil
- 1 sweet potato peeled and cut into cubes
- 3 medium sized fennel bulbs sliced
- 1 tablespoon almond flakes
- ½ cup Almond Milk
- 1 slice sour dough bread cut into cubes
- drizzle olive oil
- salt and pepper
- fennel leaves to serve
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees celcius
- To a wok, or wide based pan set to medium heat add the garlic, lemon zest and coconut oil
- When fragrant add the sweet potato cubes and sliced fennel and stir
- Cook for a few minutes over medium heat, stir and cook for another few minutes until the vegetables begin to colour
- Remove from the heat and add to a baking pan, add the Almond Milk and almond slivers, bread cubes and drizzle with a little olive oil. Add a pinch of salt and few grinds of pepper.
- Place baking tray in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until browned on top and the fennel and sweet potato can be pierced with a skewer with no resistance.
- If they are not cooked after this time but browned on top you can cover with foil or a lid and return to the oven until the vegetables are tender.
- Serve with fresh fennel leaves.
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