Modern medicine and society’s reliance on pharmaceutical medications means that the natural medical benefits of food compounds are often overlooked.
Fennel seeds provide vital nutrients such as folate, potassium, and vitamin C, but they have also long been used to help ease digestive disorders.
Although scientific studies on fennel are limited, it is known that fennel seeds contain a volatile oil that has a carminative effect1. This means that fennel seeds help to prevent the formation of excessive gas, and aid its removal from the intestinal tract. The seeds also have an antispasmodic effect2, making them effective in helping to ease stomach cramps and nausea.
One significant scientific study has shown that components in fennel seeds can ease infant colic3, and fennel seed extract is a common ingredient in gripe water.
The carminative and antispasmodic effect of fennel seeds make them an excellent choice of an ingredient in this soothing recipe. This dairy-free soup can be sipped to ease digestive discomfort, bloating, cramps, nausea and other types of abdominal pain.
Creamy Cauliflower & Fennel Soup
- 1 tbsp coconut oil or olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 cauliflower head
- 400 g tinned butter beans, drained
- 800 mls vegetable stock
- 200 mls coconut milk
- Remove the outer leaves and tough inner stalk from the cauliflower and discard. Chop the cauliflower florets roughly.
- In a large soup pan, gently sauté the onions in oil for 10 minutes, being careful not to allow them to brown.
- Add the fennel seeds and garlic and continue to sauté gently for another 5 minutes.
- Add the cauliflower, beans and vegetable stock to the soup pan. Bring the stock to the boil and then simmer for 30 minutes until the cauliflower is very soft.
- Allow to cool slightly, then add the soup and the coconut milk to the blender. Blend until very smooth.
- Return the soup to the pan and season to taste with salt and pepper.
About the author:
Sonia Nicholas is a Biomedical Scientist and Freelance Clinical Science Writer & Editor. She has been working in the field of clinical science for fifteen years.
Sonia believes that everyone can improve their health by eating a clean diet (a diet of unprocessed, fresh, whole foods) – a claim that scientific research increasingly supports.