Savoury Fennel Crumble with Herby Pistachio Crust



Fennel with Crunchy Herby Pistachio & Pine Nuts

This may or may not be an original dish- tell me if you have seen similar!  … To me it’s an original. It came about because I bought THE most beautiful bulb of fennel at Borough Market…and wanted to make a gratin… but without the cheese- or the other ordinary option of breadcrumbs, I then half remembered a recipe on my frosty walk home that was some kind of savoury crumble.

Originally I had thought I would use cashews as the crust, but once home realised we had some pistachios hanging around…and an open pack of pine nuts- which don’t keep very well so they needed using, and as ever we have loads of thyme growing, plus I had a (not very eco friendly) pack of fresh parsley.

I then discovered that I was going to have a night on my tod. ON.A.FRIDAY !!!  It’s rare to be on my own on any evening, but The Gardener has a serious job now. And I had forgotten that this could mean Friday drinkies. My own workplace doesn’t have that kind of cameraderie….-I should have made plans with my super duper friends who I PINKY PROMISED to spend more time with this year (Heidi! Carlo! Marie!).

Anyway. I was home alone. And that meant that not only I could experiment with food. I could experiment with lighting and photography.  Let me know what you think. Food styling & photography is a tricky beast & I’m learning.. quickly I hope.


NB: The pistachios were already salted- and I over salted the crust first time.. don’t do that!


Savoury Fennel Crumble with Herby Pistachio Crust

Serves 1- Just scale up!

You need:

  • Approx 1/4 fennel thinly sliced into rounds
  • 1/4 tsp marigold stock
  • 3-4 sprigs thyme -leaves only
  • 1 Tbs hot water
  • 1 Tbs pistachios -shelled &  roughly chopped ( I used some roasted, salted ones because we had them lying around- use raw/ unsalted ones if you have them!)
  • 1 Tbs pine nuts
  • 1 tsp fresh parsley (optional)
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

To Make:

  1. In a cute little ramekin add the hot water, stock and 1/4 of the thyme & stir until dissolved
  2. Layer in the fennel to about 1/3 full. ( A round, fat fennel bulb is conveniently almost the same size as my dinky ramekins!)
  3. Give the ramekin a little tilt so that all the fennel is covered in stock
  4. Pop in the oven on gas mark 6/200C for around 10 mins until the fennel is soft
  5. Meanwhile, mix together the pine nuts, crushed pistachios and herbs
  6. Remove the fennel ramekin from the oven, and cover the fennel in an even layer of the  nutty herby mix .
  7. Return to the oven for another 10 mins until the top is crusty.

This is a great side dish … Pine nuts & Fennel work really well together!




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  • Reply
    February 7, 2015 at 9:37 pm

    Yummy…that sounds delicious!! I love pistachios. I think your photography is looking great. It’s just practice and more practice.

  • Reply
    Emma Sarah Tennant
    February 8, 2015 at 10:59 am

    Delicious! I love fennel and pistachio! Time to get my ramekins out…

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