Very popular with our vegetarian guests and this recipe often features on the menu during our Yoga Retreats. To make this recipe suitable for vegan, omit the honey and replace with agave nectar.
It might seem a hassle to roast the fennel and tomatoes separately, but it does work. You can use flat-leaf parsley, mint leaves instead of coriander in the dressing, or extend the dish by serving with couscous - it's a great contrast in both colour and texture.
for the tomatoes
10 tasty tomatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1.5 tablespoons of harissa paste
2 teaspoons sugar
sea salt flakes & freshly ground black pepper
for the fennel
2 large fennel bulbs
half a lemon
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
pinch of chilli flakes
2.5 tablespoons olive oil
400g tin or jar of chickpeas, drained & rinsed
for the dressing
1 preserved lemon, plus 2 teaspoons juice from the jar
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1.5 tablespoons honey
5 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons chopped coriander
Pre-heat the oven 190ºC/Gas mark 5. Halve the tomatoes lengthways and lay in a single layer in a roasting tin or ovenproof dish. Mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar and harissa paste and pour this over the tomatoes, tossing to coat well, turn the tomatoes cut sides up. Sprinkle with sugar and season with salt and pepper.
Quarter the fennel bulbs, cut off the stalks and remove any coarse outer leaves. Pull off any green tender fronds and keep for decorating. Cut each piece of fennel into 2.5cm wedges, keeping them intact at the base. Toss in lemon juice (this stops the fennel from discolouring). Add the crushed garlic, fennel seeds, chilli and olive oil, season and coat with your hands. Spread out the fennel on a 2nd roasting tin.
Put both tins in the oven for around 30 - 40 mins. the tomatoes and fennel should be soft and caramelised and slightly shrunken. Put into a large flat bowl and add the chickpeas. Mix and set aside. Meanwhile, prepare the dressing.
Chop up the preserved lemon and whisk the wine vinegar with the preserved lemon juice, honey and olive oil. Season and add the coriander. Taste again and check for a sweet-sour balance. Finally scatter any fennel fronds over the top and spoon on the dressing.