Smashed Celeriac

Such a homely-looking rootpulled from Jamie Oliver in Happy Days w/the Naked Chef

Celeriac is that strange nasty-looking knotted ball-shaped root you’ll find at the commissary. Definitely weigh it (if you don’t self-checkout) prior to proceeding to the register – they will waste your time looking up the code.

1 large celeriac
olive oil
1 handful of fresh thyme, discard woody stems (get fresh thyme as a plant from the German grocery – you will be using this spice often if you don’t already!)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
4 tbsp stock (if you don’t have fresh stock, use water – there is no stock available that doesn’t include gluten unless you go to a specialty store)

As a rather lengthy aside here, if you don’t have some fresh stock frozen or sitting in your refrigerator, you need to make some – it enhances the taste of just everything. All you do is buy one of those little soup bundles from the German store – they usually include a couple carrots, some celeriac, onions/leeks, and some parsley (or just buy those ingredients yourself- celery of course is a great sub for celeriac). Peel clean the ingredients and throw them in a pot with some chicken bones w/some seasoning at night for 3-4 hours and bam – Voilà – stock. Stock will transform your cooking. Here’s Jamie’s recipe for chicken stock.

Cut all the dirty peel/roots off your celeriac and slice the thing in half. Roll each half on its flat edge and dice it up to approximately sized 1/2-inch cubes. This is seriously the only pain in the butt about preparing celeriac.

Put a casserole-type pot on high heat, add 3 glugs of olive oil then the celeriac, thyme and garlic with a little salt & pepper. Stir around to coat and fry quickly, coloring it slightly, about 5 minutes. Turn the heat down to a simmer, add your stock (or water), place a lid on top and cook for at least 25 minutes, until tender. Now season a little more to taste if needed and mash it up with a wood spoon (see picture). This side dish goes great with any meat, as Jamie says. I usually serve it with steak.

  1. Christina says:

    This tasted amazing! I made it though pulled it early while it was still a bit lumpy and my husband thought it was stuffing. Didn’t have the heart to tell him otherwise! O:-)

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