Lemon Fennel Poached Prawns

Fennel Lemon Poached Prawns is a Spanish tapas recipe created by Top Chef Canada Winner Chef Rene Rodriguez. The chef had our award winning Reserva Familiar in his kitchen when he became inspired.

Lemmon Fennel Poached Prawns 

We like the use of fennel in this recipe, a lesser used, but delectable vegetable, paired with seafood.

You will need to have a small instant read thermometer on hand, to recreate this dish at home.

To guarantee success, be sure to read the whole recipe before beginning. Do not forget to review Chef Rene’s Tips and Tricks for Fennel Poached Prawns at the bottom of this recipe.

Once the Fennel Lemon Poached Prawns are ready be sure the have a crusty baguette on hand to mop up the delicious juices.

Lemmon Fennel Poached Prawns Ingredients


Fennel Lemon Poached Prawns Ingredients :

Serves 4

1 head fennel
2 cups of Olivo Real Reserva Familiar, plus extra to drizzle. 
20 large spot prawns or Argentinian wild shrimp, deveined and peeled
1 lemon
1 teaspoon Maldon salt
1 teaspoon Espelette pepper
2 cloves garlic, crushed
10 baby tomatoes, cut in half
micro basil to garnish



  1. Thinly slice the fennel.
  2. Blanch in boiling water for 2 minutes. Chill in ice water and drain.
  3. In a small pot, heat the olive oil to 175 F to 180 F.
  4. Add the garlic and let it cook for 10 minutes.
  5. Next add the prawns and let cook for 10 minutes.
  6. Remove prawns from oil. Reserve cooking oil. Set aside.
  7. Drizzle with 1/2 lemon. Sprinkle with salt and Espelette pepper.
  8. Divide fennel among 4 plates.
  9. Drizzle fennel with a little of the reserved cooking oil.
  10. Squeeze on a little more lemon.
  11. Place prawns on top.
  12. Garnish with cherry tomatoes and micro basil.

    What is a spot prawn?

    Spot prawns can be confusing. These sea creatures are not prawns, as the name would suggest, but shrimp that look like mini lobsters. Spot prawns taste like lobster dipped in succulent butter! Very flavourful, indeed!

    What is blanching?

    Blanching is the method of plunging food into boiling water or oil to cook for a short period of time.

    What is Maldon salt?

    Maldon salt is flaked sea salts. It comes from the town of Maldon, located in eastern England, in the county of Essex, on the River Blackwater. The river flows into an estuary, or partially enclosed body of water where the river meets the sea. Here is where the salt is harvested from.

    Maldon salt has a clean, mild flavour. It is used as a finishing salt and not a cooking salt.

    How do you use the mandoline?

    To use a mandoline first cut the end of the beet with a knife to create a flat end. Then, wet the blade. While applying even pressure, run the beet along the blade, away from your body. Most importantly, use the guard if you have one.

    What is Espelette pepper?

    This is a French pepper used as a spice that has a low to medium heat level. The taste is smoky, with a hint of citrus.

    What is micro basil?

    Micro basil are the young, tiny leaves of regular basil. It is harvested early about every 12-15 days. It creates a very pretty presentation.

    Regular basil will work well in this recipe, especially when cut chiffonade.

    What kind of wine should I drink with Fennel Lemon Poached Prawns?

    Chef Rene suggests a Spanish cava.

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