The Domaine is located just 15 miles from the Mediterranean Sea, which is home to some of the most incredible fish and seafood. Ben and Bea have discovered that bright and early every morning, without fail, five or six fishermen set up little stalls in the nearby port town of Sainte-Maxime, to sell their freshly caught fish and crustaceans to locals. Ben and Bea enjoy creating seafood dishes that also incorporate Provencal vegetables and herbs from the domaine kitchen garden.
Crucially, however, they’ve also been learning about the Medfish Project; ongoing work by the EU, the WWF and Marine Stewardship Council over the last decade to combat over-fishing and to support French fisheries in the Mediterranean on their path to sustainability. Just last year, in March 2019, a new fishery management plan was approved by the EU, towards the goal of sustainable fishing in the Mediterranean.
Chef Ben shares a few handy pointers when choosing prawns, “We take extreme care to source prawns from fisherman who respect the seafloor, sea life and the environment. When choosing raw prawns, look for prawns that are translucent and bluish in colour, but that have a fairly consistent
colour all over, rather than a discoloured head or shell, as this can suggest the flesh is starting to go off. If prawns are about to go off, they can also feel slimy, and will smell strongly of fish and ammonia.”
This dish of grilled prawns with garlic, parsley and roasted fennel is great for a sharing-style alfresco meal and is very quick and easy to prepare. We suggest serving it with a glass of Mirabeau Pure; its zingy freshness and citrus aromas really complement the prawns.
- 500g raw prawns
- 20ml Extra Virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 small handful flatleaf parsley, leaves picked off stems and roughly torn
- ½ a lemon, juice only
- 1 bulb fennel, outside layer removed, sliced into quarters keeping the core intact
- Season the fennel quarters with salt and olive oil. If you have access to a BBQ, char the fennel on the BBQ for a few minutes on each side. Or you can use a frying pan instead.
- Roast the fennel in the oven with olive oil for 20 minutes or until al dente. Set aside.
- Warm a frying pan over a medium to high heat. Once the pan is warm, add 20ml olive oil, then add the prawns.
- Cook evenly on each side, turning halfway through. This should take around 3-5 minutes in total, depending on the size of the prawns
- Once the prawns have turned pink almost all over, add the garlic and toss continuously until the prawn are fully cooked and the garlic is lightly golden
- Add a nice pinch of salt, lemon juice and parsley
- Remove from heat and serve immediately, on a platter together with the roasted fennel quarters