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Prawn & fennel bisque

  • 450g raw tiger prawn in their shells
  • 4 tbsp olive oil Olive oil ol-iv oylProbably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…
  • 1 large onion, chopped Onion un-yunOnions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…
  • 1 large fennel bulb, chopped, fronds reserved Fennel bulbLike Marmite, fennel is something that you either love or hate - its strong aniseed flavour…
  • 2 carrots, chopped Carrot ka-rotThe carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root…
  • 150ml dry white wine
  • 1 tbsp brandy Brandy bran-deeBrandy is a distilled spirit made from virtually any fermented fruit or starchy vegetable.…
  • 400g can chopped tomato
  • 1l fish stock
  • 2 generous pinches paprika Paprika pa-preek-ahA spice that's central to Hungarian cuisine, paprika is made by drying a particular type of…
  • 150ml pot double cream
  • 8 tiger prawns, shelled, but tail tips left on (optional)
  • fennel fronds (optional)
  • Shell the prawns, then fry the shells in the oil in a large pan for about 5 mins. Add the onion, fennel and carrots and cook for about 10 mins until the veg start to soften. Pour in the wine and brandy, bubble hard for about 1 min to drive off the alcohol, then add the tomatoes, stock and paprika. Cover and simmer for 30 mins. Meanwhile, chop the prawns.
  • Blitz the soup as finely as you can with a stick blender or food processor, then press through a sieve into a bowl. Spend a bit of time really working the mixture through the sieve as this will give the soup its velvety texture.
  • Tip back into a clean pan, add the prawns and cook for 10 mins, then blitz again until smooth. You can make and chill this a day ahead or freeze it for 1 month. Thaw ovenight in the fridge. To serve, gently reheat in a pan with the cream. If garnishing, cook the 8 prawns in a little butter. Spoon into small bowls and top with the prawns and snipped fennel fronds.