Squash, Fermented Black Bean & Fennel

Squash, Fermented Black Bean & Fennel

This delicious dish was the winning starter at the 2019 Kikkoman Masters, created and prepared by competition winner Stefan Sewell

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  • Serves4


Soy Butter

  • 250g Unsalted Butter – room temp
  • 25g Rice Vinegar
  • 25g Kikkoman Soy
  • 100g Manuka Honey
  • 3g White Pepper Ground

Roasted Squash

  • 250g Unsalted Butter – room temp
  • 25g Rice Vinegar
  • 25g Kikkoman Soy
  • 100g Manuka Honey
  • 3g White Pepper Ground

Black Bean Sauce

  • 200g Fermented Black Beans
  • 2 Garlic Cloves - Minced
  • 5g Ginger - Finely Diced
  • 10g Shallot - Finely Diced
  • 20g Kikkoman Soy Sauce
  • 20g Manuka Honey
  • 20g Rice Vinegar

Linseed Tuille

  • 60g Brown Linseeds
  • 30g Pumpkin Seeds
  • 30g Sunflower Seeds
  • 25g Manuka Honey
  • 175g Water

Gyoza Filling

  • Trimmings from Squash
  • 2 Garlic Cloves - crushed
  • 4g Ginger - finely diced
  • 100g Fermented Black Beans - roughly chopped
  • 20g Coriander - shredded
  • 2 Spring Onions - shredded
  • White Pepper
  • Sea Salt
  • Gyoza Wrappers

Gyoza Glaze

  • 20g Kikokman Soy Sauce
  • 20g Rice Vinegar
  • 20g Water
  • Cornflour - to eye

Bean Puree

  • 250g Fermented Black Beans
  • 50ml Olive Oil
  • Kikkoman Soy Sauce - Season


  • 1 Bulb Fennel
  • 100g Rapeseed Oil
  • 90g Caster Sugar
  • 100g White Wine Vinegar
  • 30g Picked Dill
  • 4 Egg Yolks
  • Fennel Salt (10g Fennel Seeds, 10g Maldon Sea Salt - toasted and blitzed)


  • 1 Spring Onion - Shredded
  • 1 bulb fennel - sliced on a mandolin
  • Fennel Fronds


Soy Butter - Place all the ingredients into a hand blender or equivalent. Process the butter until you achieve a dark soy butter. Keep aside for the cooking of the squash.

Roasted Squash - Portion the top half of the squash into four equal portions.Using an 8cm and a 6cm round cutter, cut the squash to achieve the required shape. Reserve the trimmings of the squash and roughly dice along with the base.

Place the portioned squash into a Vac Pac bag along with the soy butter and seal. Set aside for cooking.

Place the squash and soy butter into a water bath at 75c for 30 mins allowing the squash to gently poach.

Once cooked remove squash from water bath and the vac pac bag. In a hot pan, roast the squash in the pan glazing with the soy butter and black bean sauce. This will give you a caramelised squash glazed with black bean sauce. Allow to rest before serving.

Black Bean Sauce - Place garlic, ginger and shallots into a pan. Gently sweat down and add the black beans.

Caramelize the beans and deglaze pan with honey, soy and rice vinegar. Gently simmer the sauce until a nice thick glaze.

Season and set aside for glazing the squash.

Linseed Tuille - Place seeds into a bowl.Boil water and honey, pouring over seeds once boiled. Leave the seeds to soak up the water and honey mixture (20mins).

Once the seeds have soaked up all the liquid. Place seed mix onto a pastry mat and roll out until nice and thin.

Place into the oven at 150c and bake until the seed mixture crisps up. Remove for service.

Gyoza Filling - Place the diced trimmings of the squash on a tray with garlic and ginger. Season and roast in oven 180c until soft and tender. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Once cooled run a chef's knife through the squash mixture. Add the beans, coriander, and spring onions. Season with white pepper and salt, set filling aside.

Place a gyoza wrapper in the palm of your hands, with your index finger lightly run water around the edges of the wrapper paste, this will help seal the gyoza. Place a tsp of the filling into the middle of the gyoza wrapper. Bringing the sides up, seal the edges of the gyoza and shape the dough into a nice shaped gyoza. Set aside once you have 4 portions.

Place a pan of salted water onto a medium heat to a rolling boil. Gently place the gyoza into the pan and gently cook the gyoza for 5-8mins.

Gyoza Glaze - Bring soy, water, and rice vinegar to a boil. Mix cornflour and water to form a paste. Add paste to the boiling soy mixture until thickens into a nice glaze.

Toss the cooked gyoza in the glaze and set aside for serving.

Bean Puree - Place beans in a saucepan with water and gently cook until soft.

Drain the beans and place into a blender. Blend beans with olive oil to form a smooth puree, season with Kikkoman soy and place into a piping bag for service.

Fennel - Using a mandolin finely slice the fennel and set aside.

Place rapeseed oil, caster sugar, white wine vinegar, dill and egg yolks into a thermomixer.

Cook at 60c for 4.5mins until a thick emulsion. Allow to cool.

Once cool dress the sliced fennel with the dill emulsion and season with fennel salt. Serve.

Assembly - Place the Black Bean glazed Squash onto the centre of the plate, place the dressed fennel to the side.

Pipe a dot of the Black Bean puree onto the plate, dress the squash with fennel fronds and sliced fennel. Place the seed tuille in between dressed fennel and squash so it stands high.

In a small side plate, place the glazed gyoza dressed with shredded spring onions.


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