Celeriac, the root bulb of celery, has a distinctive subtle celery-flavour. If you’ve never tried it because it looks weird and you don’t know how to prepare it, read this and buy one tonight! Celeriac is fantastically versatile and is an under-rated vegetable.
· Only 42kcal per 100g
· Good source of dietary fibre
· Rich source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium
· Good source of calcium and iron and B vitamins
How to cook
Celeriac can be eaten either cooked or raw. It’s a popular salad addition when grated. It’s a great vegetable to buy as it doesn’t perish as quickly as many other vegetables, and stored in a cool, dark place can last up to weeks! It can be mashed (like mashed potatoes), roasted, made into soup or casseroles.
To prepare, you’ll need to remove all of the outer brown skin and leave only the creamy white flesh inside. You don’t want any of the skin, it’s one of the few vegetables you’ll hear me say: peel it! Think of a pineapple, and you’re on the right track! Be ruthless.
Try this at Christmas:
· Peel and chop one celeriac and boil until soft and tender (about 30mins)
· Drain and transfer to a bowl
· Add some low fat crème fraiche with a dash of salt and pepper and mash!
· Peel and wedge the celeriac
· Heat oven to 200c
· Toss the wedges in olive oil and whole garlic cloves
· Roast for about 30-40 minutes, turning halfway
Slooooow-cooked Celeriac Soup
Fan of Delia Smith? You’ll love this recipe then, it’s one of hers!
450g trimmed celery stalks
1 medium onion, peeled
1.5L hot stock (made from vegetable Bouillon powder such as Marigold)
3 bay leaves
Salt and pepper
2 tbsp natural yoghurt or crème fraiche (for garnishing)
You’re looking for about 450g of celeriac flesh, remember – peeling it loses a lot of the vegetable’s mass! Preheat oven to 140c/Gas 1
Cut celeriac and onion into chunks
Put all the ingredients except the yoghurt/crème fraiche into a casserole dish and bring to the boil on the hob. Then place on lid and put into the oven for its slow cook – 3hours of slow cook! When ready, remove the bay leaves and allow to cool so that you can blend it.
Bring up the heat again on the hob to get the soup nice and hot for serving.
Serve with a dollop of yoghurt or crème fraiche
Seb is a writer and blogger of food and nutrition. He holds a bachelors and a masters degree in nutrition science, and has studied sports and exercise nutrition at postgraduate level. He specialises in plant-based nutrition and believes passionately that we can all live with a little less meat. He writes for www.veggieandspice.com and www.itsaboutnutrition.com