Fennel and lemon dauphinoise

Fennel and lemon dauphinoise

By
From
Citrus
Serves
4
Photographer
Mowie Kay

The lemon in this recipe melds seamlessly with the fennel and cream despite being unpeeled – you will get the odd burst of sour, but it never feels de trop. This is a perfect side dish for any simply grilled fish or meat.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
a slice butter, plus extra for greasing
2 fennel bulbs
1 lemon
300ml whipping cream
50ml milk
1 teaspoon plain flour
3 tablespoons breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons roughly grated pecorino
a grating nutmeg
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Rub a gratin dish with butter. Bring 2 saucepans of water to the boil.
  2. Trim off and reserve any leafy fronds from the fennel, then trim the base, removing the bare minimum as you want the fennel to hold together at the roots. Finely slice lengthways. Top and tail the lemon, then slice as finely as you can, preferably with a mandoline. Add the fennel and lemon to separate saucepans of boiling water and blanch – the fennel for 3–4 minutes, the lemon for 1 minute only. Drain both.
  3. Arrange the fennel and lemon in the gratin dish, seasoning the layers with salt and pepper as you go. In a bowl, whisk the cream with the milk and flour (just to combine, you do not want it to thicken). Pour this mixture over the fennel and lemon.
  4. Finely chop the reserved fennel fronds and mix with the breadcrumbs and cheese. Grate in some nutmeg (a few rasps will be enough), then stir and sprinkle over the gratin. Dice the butter and dot it over the gratin. Bake in the oven for around 1 hour until the fennel and lemon are tender and the top is crisp and golden brown.
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