Fennel soup with lemon and cinnamon

Fennel soup with lemon and cinnamon

New Middle Eastern Food
Mark Roper

We love fennel for its sweetness and subtle aniseed flavour. Here, it is transformed into a delightful lemony soup with a comforting cinnamon fragrance. It is made a little richer by adding cream and egg yolks towards the end of the cooking.


Quantity Ingredient
60ml olive oil
2 onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 leeks, roughly chopped
3 large bulbs fennel, sliced
2 potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1.5 litres good-quality chicken stock or vegetable stock
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 lemon, zested
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
2 bay leaves
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 free-range egg yolks
150ml cream, (35% fat)
2 lemons, juiced
extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves


  1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan and sauté the onions, garlic, leeks and fennel for a few minutes until they soften. Add the potatoes and chicken stock, then the cinnamon stick, lemon zest, allspice and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Remove and discard the cinnamon stick, lemon zest and bay leaves, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix the egg yolks with the cream, then ladle in a spoonful of the hot soup.
  3. Whisk together well, then tip the egg mixture into the soup. Slowly return the soup to just below boiling, stirring it all the time. Remove from the heat and adjust the seasoning with extra salt and pepper and the lemon juice.
  4. As you serve, drizzle each bowl with extra-virgin olive oil and sprinkle with a little cinnamon and parsley.
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