If you haven't heard of celeriac, or celery root, than you are not alone! I can tell you that it is worth knowing about, because it is a valuable complement to your winter root vegetables.
Celeriac is actually not the root of the celery you buy at the market, but a variety grown for its bulb. It has a celery flavor and looks like a large, round, more gnarled potato. It can be used many ways, including in stews, gratins, mashed or pureed.
The first time I had it was over Christmas, when my sis-in-law roasted up a medley of parsnips, fennel, carrots, onion, squash and of course celery root. This is a bit of a complicated recipe, but the flavors are amazing.
Roasted Winter Vegetables
Source: Jamie Oliver
- Halved carrots with a bit of cumin, rosemary and olive oil
- Quartered parsnips with thyme, honey and olive oil
- Peeled and sliced celeriac with thyme, rosemary and olive oil
- Chunks of squash with crushed coriander seeds, a hint of chili powder, oregano and olive oil
- Quartered fennel with its own leafy tops and olive oil
- Whole baby turnips with tarragon, a splash of white wine vinegar and olive oil
- Peeled and quartered red onions with sage and olive oil
All the vegetables should be cut into similar-sized pieces so that they cook at the same time, tossed separately with their suggested flavorings and season generously. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the vegetables in a large tray next to each other and cover with tin foil. Cook in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, then remove the foil and continue roasting for another 20–30 minutes until the vegetables are golden and tender. If by any chance one is cooked before another, simply remove it from the oven and keep it warm in a serving dish.
After that, I wanted to try it out on my own, so I found this Barefoot Contessa recipe. I am not a huge fan of mashed potatoes, so this is an ideal alternative. And it was SO delicious!
Celery Root and Apple Puree
2008, Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics, All Rights Reserved
Serves 4 - 6
- 1/4 pound (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 cup large-diced fennel bulb, tops and core removed
- 2 pounds celery root, peeled and (3/4-inch) diced
- 8 ounces Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and (3/4-inch) diced
- 3 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and (3/4-inch) diced
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup good apple cider
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
Melt the butter over medium heat in a shallow pot or large saute pan. Add the fennel, celery root, potatoes, apples, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Saute the vegetables, stirring occasionally, until they begin to soften, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the cider and tightly cover the pot. Simmer over low heat for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are very soft. If the vegetables begin to burn or they seem dry, add another few tablespoons of apple cider or some water.
When the vegetables are cooked, add the cream and cook for 1 more minute. Transfer the mixture to a food mill or food processor. Taste for salt and pepper and return to the pot to keep warm. Serve warm.
Would love to hear your experience with celery root! Any recipes to share??