Raw celeriac | PHOTO BY DAVID HAMMOND
Updated: March 7, 2014 1:23PM
Celeriac is not an attractive vegetable: it’s knobby and hairy. Celeriac also is called celery root, and although it’s related to celery, it’s not the same plant. It’s a quintessential winter vegetable, and it keeps very well in root cellars (and, yes, some of us still have such storage rooms).
Admittedly, it’s a little odd to write about this vegetable with the last gasps of summer heat still hanging upon us, but here’s the thing: Although celeriac keeps throughout the winter, it’s in farmers markets now. So this is an excellent time to either stock up your root cellar or enjoy celeriac fresh.
No one is going to claim that celeriac is a nutritional powerhouse, but it does offer modest quantities of vitamins C and B-9, and it’s a reasonable source of fiber. It’s also relatively low in fat, calories and carbohydrates, with about one-third the carbs of potato.
Celeriac has the dense texture of potato, though it’s not as starchy as the spud, and it does, indeed, taste faintly of celery.
Celeriac is very suitable for oven-frying; here’s how we prepared it:
1. Cut celeriac into sticks
2. Toss with oil, salt, pepper and paprika
3. Bake at 400 degrees for 35 minutes
— David Hammond