Prawns with fennel, butter beans & almonds cooked in fino sherry


Still on a healthkick and looking for further flavour inspiration… This time my attention turns to Spain. Using fino sherry is really key to creating an authentic flavour here. I associate the taste of this alcohol with prawn shells and stock so much that I can’t drink it alone. I just feel like I’m sipping on prawn bisque! (Not that that’s a bad thing).


Fennel, almonds and butter beans prove interesting textural/flavour companions for these meaty prawns. Delicious! I served these babies alongside some salty padron peppers, anchovy-wrapped quails’ eggs, lettuce and olives – and a very delicious, quite sweet white Argentinian wine from alma andina, torrontes 2012. Incredible with seafood.


You will need:

15-20 good quality raw king prawns
300g tinned butter beans, drained
1 tbspn smoked paprika
1 bulb of fennel, sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed or sliced
Handful of toasted almonds
3 tbspns fino sherry
Olive oil


1 – Heat around 2 tbspns olive oil in a frying pan and add the fennel; cook over a medium heat until softened, stirring often
2 – Add the butter beans and garlic, followed by the smoked paprika, to the pan and cook for a few minutes
3 – Push the beans and fennel to one side of the pan, add a splash more oil and crank up the heat; add the prawns, shortly followed by the fino, to the pan and allow the alcohol to burn off
4 – Cook only until the prawns are just cooked through, then pull the beans and fennel back into the centre of the pan, stir well and season with salt
5 – Serve the prawns immediately, with a selection of other tapas style dishes


Note: don’t be afraid to use a little more olive oil than normal. I was light handed in my usage, only because I’m trying to watch my fat/calorie intake, but the Spanish way is to be pretty generous with the oil. Arguably this makes this type of tapas dish even more irresistible!



9 thoughts on “Prawns with fennel, butter beans & almonds cooked in fino sherry

  1. Yum, yum – I’m on a fennel kick at the moment – just loving it. It’s a new passion because growing up I really did not go for aniseed flavours. This just looks fab. Margaret

    1. Thanks Margaret! I agree, I never ate fennel in my childhood. Now I love fennel, went through an obsession phase last year. Kind of ate too much, but not it’s very much back on my radar. It’s so versatile!

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