Fish and fennel soup

This colourful soup is light yet satisfying. Chunky cubes of white fish, prawns and small pasta shells combine with the full flavours of fennel and leek to make a delicious first course. Serve with warm crusty bread, or chunky slices off a hearty mixed–grain loaf or poppyseed bread plait.

Fish and fennel soup


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil1 leek, white part only, sliced
  • 1 bulb of fennel, roughly chopped
  • 300 ml dry white wine
  • 1 litre fish stock
  • 125 g conchigliette (soup pasta shells)
  • 500 g white fish fillets, skinned and cut into chunks
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped1 tablespoon cornflour
  • 125 g peeled cooked prawns
  • ½ teaspoon chilli sauce, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons pouring cream
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper


  1. Heat the oil in a large heavy–based saucepan.
  2. Add the leek and fennel, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Pour in the wine and fish stock, and bring to the boil.
  4. Add the pasta and stir the soup once, then leave to simmer for about 8 minutes or until the pasta is almost tender.
  5. Gently stir in the chunks of fish and the tomatoes, with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Cook over a low heat for a further 2–3 minutes or until the fish is just firm.
  7. Meanwhile, blend the cornflour to a smooth paste with 2 tablespoons water.
  8. Stir the cornflour mixture into the soup and bring it to the boil, stirring constantly.
  9. Add the cooked prawns and simmer gently for a further 1 minute.
  10. Stir in the chilli sauce to taste.
  11. Add the cream and parsley, stir to mix and serve immediately.

Serves 6
Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: 20 minutes


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