WHOLE TROUT WITH ROASTED FENNEL AND AL­MONDS

Country Living (UK) - - Food & Drink -

Prepa­ra­tion 25 min­utes Cook­ing 50 min­utes Serves 4 Choose fennel bulbs with frondy stems so you can use them to flavour the trout.

3-4 fennel bulbs, de­pend­ing on size (about 750g) 2 tbsp olive oil 1.5kg whole trout, gut­ted and cleaned 40g panko bread­crumbs zest of 2 or­anges 2 hand­fuls of rocket leaves 2 lemons ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil 100g manchego, cubed 30g salted roasted al­monds

1 Heat the oven to 190°C (170°C fan oven) gas mark 5. Halve the fennel, re­mov­ing the outer layer if it is bruised or blem­ished. (Re­serve the fronds for the fish.) Slice in half top to bot­tom, then cut each piece into four wedges. Spread in one layer in a roast­ing pan and driz­zle with the oil. Sea­son with salt and freshly ground black pep­per. Roast for 20-25 min­utes un­til golden-tinged and ten­der. Set aside to cool slightly while you cook the fish.

2 Turn up the oven tem­per­a­ture to 200°C (180°C fan oven) gas mark 6. Sea­son the cav­ity of the fish and put the frondy fennel stems in­side. Lay the fish in an oiled roast­ing pan.

3 Mix to­gether the panko bread­crumbs with the orange zest. Sea­son and sprin­kle over the fish. Bake for 20-25 min­utes un­til the flesh flakes from the bone.

4 Ar­range the baked fennel on a serv­ing plat­ter with the rocket leaves. Squeeze over juice of 1 lemon and driz­zle with ex­tra-vir­gin olive oil. Scat­ter with the manchego and al­monds.

Serve with the fish and ex­tra lemon wedges.

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