A Provencal Lunch of Saffron-scented orange and fennel potato stew with roasted garlic aioli
Saffron Scented Fennel & Potato Stew - as detailed by One Fork One Spoon 1.5 lbs red or yellow-fleshed potatoes 2 fennel bulbs 1 pound ripe tomatoes, peeled and seeded, juice reserved or 2 cups whole canned tomatoes salt 3-4 T. virgin olive oil 1 large leek, white part only, finely diced 1 large yellow onion, cut into wedges 1/2 in. thick 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1 t. herbes de Provence 2-3 pinches of saffron threads a large strip of orange zest, about 2 in. long 2 bay leaves 1 cup dry white wine 2 T. chopped parsley 12 Nicoise, Gaeta or oil-cured black olives, pitted
Peel the potatoes and slice them lengthwise into quarters or sixths. Trim the fennel and cut into wedges 1/2 in. thick. Cut the tomatoes into large, neat pieces.
Boil the potatoes for 5 minutes. Remove the potatoes but reserve the water.
Warm the olive oil in a wide pan and add the leek, onion, garlic, herbs, a little salt, saffron, orange zest and bay leaves. Cook slowly over medium heat until the onions soften, about 6 minutes. Add the wine and reduce by half. Add tomatoes, potatoes, fennel, half the parsley and olives. Pour in enough of the potato water to cover and bring to boil. Simmer covered for about 35 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Or preheat oven to 375, cover loosely, and bake for about 1 hour. Garnish with remaining parsley and garlic aoli.
Garlic Aioli 1/2 cup slivered almonds* 1/2 to 1 garlic clove 1 tablespoon dijon mustard salt and pepper 2 tablespoons lemon juice 2 tablespoons olive oil 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons water
Add all ingredients except for the water to a blender or food processor and process for 30 seconds to 1 minute until smooth-ish. Gradually add the water until the desired creaminess and smooth consistency is achieved. Serve immediately or refrigerate until needed. Enjoy!