Prawn & fennel cocktail
- Preparation and cooking time
- More effort
- Serves 6 - 8
- 3 heads fennel , trimmed
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 2 tsp Maldon sea salt
- juice ½ lemon
- 400g cooked, peeled king prawns
- handful chervil leaves, roughly chopped
- handful tarragon leaves, roughly chopped
- 6 small handfuls mixed salad leaves
- 1 lemon , cut into 6 wedges
For the rouille
- 1 small red chilli , deseeded
- 1 garlic clove
- pinch saffron strands
- 250ml good-quality mayonnaise
- STEP 1
To make the rouille, use a pestle and mortar to mash chilli and garlic to a smooth paste. Bring the saffron to a simmer with 4 tbsp of water. Stir saffron water, garlic and chilli into the mayonnaise and put in the fridge, until ready to use.
- STEP 2
Cut the fennel into quarters, remove the cores and use a Japanese mandolin or sharp knife to slice as thinly as possible. Bring a pan of water to the boil and blanch the fennel for 1 min until just wilted. Drain and tip into iced water. Drain again and use a cloth to wring out all the excess water, then leave in the fridge.
- STEP 3
To assemble the dish, season the fennel with the sugar, salt, a decent grinding of pepper and the lemon juice. Cut most of the prawn tails in half, saving a whole one for each serving. Mix the chopped prawns into the fennel, then add the chopped chervil and tarragon and enough rouille to bind everything together (about 6-7 tbsp). Half-fill 6-8 martini glasses loosely with the fennel mix. Place the mixed leaves on top, then a whole prawn tail, then drizzle with the fennel juices that will have collected at the bottom of the bowl. Serve straight away with a wedge of lemon.