© Julius Honnor for Clock Book: Recipes from the Modern Moroccan Kitchen, 33 Books Ltd
As far as I’m concerned fennel is a much underused, little appreciated vegetable that packs all sorts of goodness. The ancient Greeks swore by it for weight loss (which can’t be a bad thing in this line of work), it’s also known to ease migraines and it happens to be in season in August.
The classic way to have it is baked with fish; the aniseedy overtones seem to bring out all the flavours of the sea. This recipe however is from my forthcoming book: Clock Book: Recipes from the Modern Moroccan Kitchen (available October 2010) and calls for fennel in its raw state. The salad goes brilliantly with simply grilled mackerel or sardines.
Serves four as a side dish and two as a main course
• 1 bulb of fennel (look for bulbs that are plump and juicy), thinly sliced
• 1 orange (cut away the peel and pith with a knife then slice the segments away from the membrane)
• 2-3 large handfuls of ruccola (or mix ruccola and watercress)
• 1 tbsp capers, rinsed
• 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• Freshly ground black pepper
Toss together all the ingredients, drizzle the oil over the top and add a grind of fresh, black pepper.