low FODMAP, vegetarian/vegan

Sometimes, you get to have the cake and eat it. And then lick the spoon. This dish ticks all boxes for me: it’s low FODMAP, vegetarian/vegan, and it satisfies my craving for pizza. Well, almost. The aubergine roast was a quick invention thrown together from whatever I had in the pantry during an afternoon working from home. Fennel has a little of a back story… I first got to know this elegant bulb when both my Mum and I worked as maids in Italy. Therefore, to me, it will forever bring up images of small vegetable stalls in narrow streets, baskets of morning groceries carried home in sun so bright that you could hear it bouncing off walls and pavements, and with the sweet aroma rising from my Mother’s largest cast iron pan when she would fry it just before lunchtime.

It’s a good thing I love living in California, or else I’d be very nostalgic right now.

A note about fennel: newest data from the Monash University indicate that up to half a cup of fresh bulb is considered safe.  This probably translates to 1/4 cup sauteed… you man want to start with even less and assess the situation.


Aubergine Roast with Sauteed Fennel

(Yield: 4-6 portions, preparation: 1/2 hour, total time: 1.5 hours, difficulty: easy)

  • 4 small carrots
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 1 large or two small aubergines
  • 5 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 tablespoon each oregano and marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon each thyme, rosemary, sage, salt and sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic-infused oil
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chopped scallions (green part only)
  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • cheese to serve (I used Muenster) – replace with vegan cheese or yeast flakes if desired

Chop the carrots, potatoes and aubergine into bite-sized pieces. Mix everything other than the fennel, cheese and the last two tablespoons of olive oil,  and roast under aluminum foil for 1 hour at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Uncover and roast for a further 20 minutes at 420 degrees Fahrenheit.

In the meantime, chop the fennel into ‘feathers': cut it in half from the leaves to the base, place on a chopping board flat side down, make two long incisions from leaves to base making sure you don’t actually reach the base and slice thinly across the bulb, making little half-moons. Basically, it’s like chopping an onion. I should have taken a photo of this stage… Once you’re done chopping, heat up the oil in a large pan or skillet, throw in the fennel and sautee on small heat until all pieces have turned translucent and some are starting to brown.

Serve both items together while piping hot, top with cheese (dairy or vegan), or with yeast flakes.


The sauteed fennel can also be used as an appetiser or a side dish… if you’re brave, try it as a condiment on a burger, with some sharp cheese, a slice of tomato and a few leaves of baby spinach.


  1. Roger Lawley says:

    Have had to adapt your lovely recipe a little, no Majoram or chili flakes, so have used some smoked paprika and paté de Piment, and will use a mix of Parmesan and Cheddar Cheese with Fresh Sage and Basil leaves . Thanks for a Great recipe !

    • odrowaz says:

      Wow this combo of spices sounds amazing! I may have to try that myself. Thanks for visiting! :)

      (Really sorry for the delay in answering, I just realized by spam filter malfunctioned and blocked tons of comments… going through all 1,900 now and checking them manually. Oops.)

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