The combination of fennel with it's aniseed edge and the mature Cheddar is a match made in heaven. The soup has a velvety texture, is creamy and rich but fortunately not in calories. I have chosen to use a lighter, less fat Cheddar.
- Vegetable Stock - 1.25L / 6 cups
- White Onion - 1, finely chopped
- Potato - 1, large diced
- Fennel - 2, sliced
- Cheddar Cheese, mature - 200g/1.5 cup grated
- Thyme dried - 1 tsp.
- Salt & White Pepper - to taste
- Croutons - to garnish
- Olive Oil - 2 tbsp.
Heat the olive oil on medium heat in your stockpot and gently fry the chopped onion until softened but not coloured.
Trim your fennel bulb. If it came with stalks and fronds attached, chop those off and discard the stalks but reserve the fronds for the garnish.Cut the bulb in half. Next, lay each half on your cutting board, flat side down. Slice across the bulb with your kitchen knife in thin slices.
Add the slices of fennel and diced potato to the onion and fry for a few minutes.
Pour in your vegetable stock, bring to boil and cover. Once boiling reduce the heat and simmer for 25 minutes or until the potato and fennel has soften.
Turn off the heat, stir in the grated Cheddar cheese and let the soup cool down for a few minutes. Purée the ingredients with a hand blender in the stockpot or purée in batches in your blender.
Return the soup to a clean pan, season with thyme, salt and white pepper to taste, and heat through without boiling.
Garnish with croutons and fronds of the fennel bulb and serve immediately.