Cultivate’s fennel bulbs are works of art, complete with fantastic long feathery fronds.

Don’t throw away the fronds…

They are delicious with fish – parcel the whole lot up in foil to bake, steam together or chop and brush over grilled fish…

They make a wonderful tea with fresh mint (or on their own), just pop a handful in a teapot and wait..  the result is a very gently green, refreshing drink

And, excitingly, I discovered this weekend that they make great pesto …

* two cups of lightly packed fronds
* 1/2 cup of grated parmesan
* 1/2 cup olive oil
* 1/2 cup toasted pistachios or pine nuts

Grind the cheese and nuts with a food processor (using a wand processor is easiest if you have one). Put the fennel fronds in and as you process it all add the oil until it is a creamy consistency. You could add a squeeze of lemon too if you fancy it.

You can also use the leaves of rainbow chard instead of the fennel. Add more pine nuts or cheese to taste.

Mix with penne and throw on some more parmesan for good measure.

Success! Superhero pasta sauce, packed full of iron and fantastic goodness, AND loved by the kids!

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