Riverford Wicked Leeks
Cream of fennel soup recipe image

Print Cream of fennel soup

This soup is rich and delicious, and it's good both warm and cold. For a more everyday fennel soup, begin with a chopped leek and potato and use only stock as the liquid. The long, slow cooking completely transforms the fennel, so that it loses all trace of the fibrous quality that it has when raw.


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 fennel bulbs, trimmed & chopped (reserve the fronds for a garnish)
  • Large lump of butter
  • 1 glass of white wine
  • ½ tsp fennel seeds
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • Splash of Pernod (optional)
  • 100ml double cream
  • Salt & pepper


  1. Sweat the chopped onion and fennel in the butter very slowly, covered, for about 30 minutes.
  2. Stir occasionally and make sure that they aren’t sticking; by the time you are finished they should be very soft. Add the wine and simmer for 5 minutes, uncovered.
  3. Add the fennel seeds and the stock and gently simmer, covered, for a further 30 minutes.
  4. Liquidise and, if you want a very smooth soup, pass through a fine sieve. If using the Pernod, heat in a small pan and carefully flame with a match.
  5. Allow the flames to die down, then stir into the soup with the cream. Reheat gently (do not boil after you have added the cream), and season.
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