Fennel gratin

This fennel gratin makes a hearty winter accompaniment for slow-cooked lamb shoulder or pot-roast chicken.
This fennel gratin makes a hearty winter accompaniment for slow-cooked lamb shoulder or pot-roast chicken. Photo: Marina Oliphant
Dietary
Vegetarian

This fennel gratin makes a hearty winter accompaniment for slow-cooked lamb shoulder or pot-roast chicken.

Ingredients

450g fennel (about three heads)

700g waxy potatoes, peeled

425ml double cream

150ml sour cream

115ml milk

Salt and pepper

Knob of butter

1 garlic clove, cut in half

2 tbsp wholegrain mustard

1 tbsp chopped parsley

Method

Trim fennel tips and remove outer leaves if these are tough or discoloured. Reserve any feathery bits and chop - they can go into the gratin.

Quarter each head of fennel length ways and carefully remove the hard core from each segment. Using a mandolin if you have one (it's much easier than a knife), cut the fennel into wafer-thin slices. Cut potatoes into wafer-thin slices, then place in a saute pan with fennel, double cream, sour cream, milk, salt and pepper. Bring to the boil, then reduce heat to low and let potatoes and fennel cook gently for about four minutes.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Butter a gratin dish and rub with halved garlic clove. Mix mustard through potato mix, then spoon mixture into gratin dish, season well and sprinkle over the reserved fennel fronds. Bake for one hour 20 minutes. The vegetables should be tender, the milk absorbed and the top golden brown.

Sprinkle parsley over and serve.