Fennel, Leek and Sweet Potato Soup [Dairy free, Gluten free, Grains Free, Sugar free]

I am always keen to try different soup ingredients, having tried fennel bulbs roasted in garlic and olive oil as a side vegetable to baked fish a few months ago, I came across fresh fennel in the veggie store today.  The recipe for a soup that looked interesting in the I Quit Sugar recipe book by Sarah Wilson has a few ingredients that are not Paleo friendly, including white potato and fresh cream or sour cream.  I adapted the recipe to include sweet potato but omitted alternatives of my home made cashew sour cream or coconut milk and coconut cream.  

Fennel is from the celery family, and has a taste and smell of anise, which is some what of a liquorish, sweet flavour or smell.  It is indeed an aromatic and  flavourful herb and looks very much like an peeled white onion, once it’s separated from it’s stems and feathery leaves.  Aromatic fennel seeds which are used in most Indian curries and Chinese five spice powder, are dried seeds off the fennel plant.

I used orange sweet potatoes in making this soup as they were the only ones I had but the ordinary sweet potato will work even better. I ran out of home made stock to make the required amount to cook this soup with and I topped up with boiling water to reach that quantity. Sauteeing the base ingredients in ghee with fennel seeds, adds to this flavorsome, nutritious and sweetish tasting soup, ideal for the cold South African Winter.


2-3 tblsp ghee (clarified butter)
1 medium onion, sliced
2 large fennel bulbs, sliced (reserve the leaves for garnish)
2 leeks, sliced
2 tsp fennel seeds
a splash of apple cider vinegar
1.5 litres chicken stock, sugar and preservatives free, preferably home made
2 cloves fresh garlic sliced
1 cup sweet potatoes, chopped
a pinch of Himalayan or sea salt to taste
Garnish with preservative free, crispy fried bacon or coconut cream

Here’s How

  • Melt the ghee in a large non stick pot.
  • Saute the fennel seeds and onions for 2  minutes, then add the sliced fennel bulbs and leeks and saute all the ingredients until translucent.

  • Add the apple cider vinegar, stir a little and pour in the chicken stock.
  • Bring to the boil, then add the garlic and sweet potatoes and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and blend using an Immersion or Stick blender or normal blender.

  • Return the soup to the pot add salt to taste and keep warm.
  • Serve with your choice of optional garnish as above and chopped fennel leaves.
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Prava Singh

A Mom, daughter, wife, sister, aunt and friend experiencing life through an evolutionary body with a revolutionary mind... A recent past former Type 2 insulin dependent and hypertensive walking time-bomb for 13.5 years, I have made positive lifestyle changes that has aided and abetted my health status for my overall betterment. Passionate about all things food, with a proud Indian heritage, I regularly blog my culinary attempts that have worked for me in my endeavours to break the shackles of food addictions and food slavery. Passionate about people too, my decision to share these endeavours is driven by informing others that a lifestyle change through food is indeed possible. I have indeed survived high school and survived life too in the most interesting and thought-provoking ways. Having lost over 50kgs of excess weight in just under a year, I have reclaimed my life and am thoroughly enjoying the journey.

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