The Underrated Root – Celeriac
March can be deceptive. The newly blossoming daffodils and primroses gives the illusion that spring has arrived. But with the lingering frost and short daylight hours, there’s little food growing locally.
For me, the perfect meal at this time of year is a warm and hearty soup. Since roots are currently in abundance, I’ve chosen one of my favourites – celeriac.
Celeriac has a fantastic deep nutty flavour with a similar taste to celery but is much smoother and silkier. It’s a versatile vegetable that works with lots of things, and, I think, it’s a much underrated because it looks quite ugly.
1 medium onion
1 head garlic
1 litre of vegetable stock
1 litre milk
Dice the celeriac and roast on a tray in the oven with garlic, thyme, salt and pepper.
In a saucepan, sweat the onion and leek no colour until soft. When the celeriac is cooked, add to the onion/leek mix, add the stock then milk. Place on heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
Blend in a food processor and pass through a fine sieve.
It might seem like a simple soup, but add a seared scallop, crispy bacon or pork belly and you’ve got a cracking dinner party dish for winter.
In the above picture, we’ve made the celeriac soup with apple and montgomery cheddar dumplings.