1 pinch saffron
1/3 cup Pernod
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, plus more for grilling
½ fennel bulb, finely diced and fronds reserved
½ cup finely diced shallots
1 stalk celery, rough fibers removed and finely diced
4 cloves garlic, finely diced
1 tsp. fennel seed
1 cup dry white wine
2 cans Sabarot brand Helix snails
4 cups low sodium vegetable stock or chicken stock
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
Zest and juice of 1 Clementine or small juice orange
1 small can Italian plum tomatoes
1 stick unsalted butter
Freshly ground black pepper
1 loaf rustic country bread
2 to 4 cloves garlic, peeled
• In a small bowl, steep the saffron in the Pernod for 10 to 15 minutes.
• In a soup pot or shallow stock pot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add the fennel, shallots, celery, minced garlic and fennel seed and sauté over medium-high heat until wilted but not browned.
• Add Pernod and saffron and wine and simmer long enough to allow the alcohol to cook out, about 4 minutes.
• Add the snails, the broth and the citrus zest and juices.
• Drain the canned tomatoes and then push them through a fine-mesh sieve, reserving the tomato sauce. Add the tomato sauce to the pot and simmer for 20 minutes.
• Add the butter and season to taste with sea salt and pepper. Simmer an additional 10 minutes.
• Meanwhile, slice the bread into Â¾-inch slices and brush each slice with olive oil.
• On a grill pan or barbecue grill, grill the bread until brown and well-marked on both sides. Lightly rub each piece with a whole clove of garlic to flavor the bread.
• Evenly divide the snail mixture between four shallow bowls.
• Garnish with fennel fronds and serve with plenty of grilled bread to soak up the juices.