Have you tried ... celery root?
BY NICOLE MARSHALL MIDDLETON World Scene Writer
Thursday, November 08, 2012
11/15/12 at 3:56 AM
Celery root is the wallflower of the produce aisle.
Just look at it. Celery root isn't going to win any beauty contests.
With its rough and bulbous brown exterior it's no wonder that this root vegetable is often ignored by many Americans. Yet Europeans love it - the French in particular.
Celery root, also called celeriac, is in the celery family. It's often pureed with other vegetables such as carrots, parsnips and potatoes.
Once cooked and mashed it has a similar texture to a mashed potato. It's also often used in soups or chopped and roasted, but celery root can also be eaten raw with dips or added to salads.
This vegetable is in season during the fall and winter.
Take care to wash the celery root thoroughly. The dirt really gets into all of its crevices.
As you wash it, you'll notice the distinct celery smell, which I like. I also like the taste of celery, but not the annoying strings. That's one of the benefits of celery root.
When you slice it open, you see the white, firm interior. Yes, celery root is prettier on the inside.
We made a puree of the celery root that we boiled with parsnips. To me, it was good in small doses and accompanied the roast chicken well.
However, next time I would like to try it with potatoes. I think the starchiness of the potatoes would balance the flavor of the celery root better.
Here are two recipes that use celery root:
1 celeriac (celery root bulb) peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/3 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons butter
1. Place the celery root cubes into a large pot and cover with salted water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer 12 minutes. Add the potatoes, and continue boiling until the vegetables are very tender, about 15 minutes more. Drain and allow to steam dry for a minute or two.
2. Return the vegetables to the pot and stir over medium-high heat until liquid is no longer pooling from the vegetables. Remove from the heat, and pour in the cream and butter. Mash with a potato masher until almost smooth.
- adapted from All Recipes
LIDIA BASTIANICH'S CELERY ROOT AND APPLE SALAD
2 pound whole celery root, rinsed but not peeled
1 pound apples
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon German-style mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh chives, chopped
1. Put the celery root in a large saucepan with cold water to cover, and heat to a boil. Lower the heat a bit, and simmer the celery root for about an hour or so, until cooked through and tender. As it cooks, keep the root submerged by weighting it with a plate or pot lid. When you can easily pierce the celery root with a skewer, drain it in a colander and cool.
2. To peel the celery root, scrape off the skin with the dull side of a paring knife, and cut out the bits of skin in the folds and any tough, knobby parts. Cut the celery root in half, and slice each half into thin half-moons; put these in the large bowl. (If the celery root is a bit fibrous, cut the slices into thin matchsticks.)
3. Rinse the apples well, but don't peel them. Slice them in half, through the stem and bottom ends, and cut out the seeds and cores. Slice the halves crosswise into half-moons, about 1/8 inch thick, add to the bowl, and gently toss the celery root and apple slices together.
4. For the dressing: Whisk together the vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl, then whisk in the olive oil gradually, until smooth and emulsified. Pour the dressing over the celery root and apple, sprinkle the chives on top, and tumble to coat all the slices with dressing. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- adapted from Lidia's Italy
Original Print Headline: Have you tried ... Celery root
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CHRISTOPHER SMITH / Tulsa World
CHRISTOPHER SMITH / Tulsa World