Celeriac is just starting to look great again. I found a fabulous bulb with all the lovely green stalks still on top. You’ll often find ones with no green on them later in the winter season. Don’t worry, they’re still great, you just won’t have the celery-like straws off the top for your Bloody Marys (genius!). But just about now is the time to start thinking about adding this versatile vegetable into your cooking rotation.
It’s lovely as a puree, either on its own or with potatoes (just cube it and cook it along with the potatoes). It’s great as a vegetable in soups. The trimmings can make a nice addition to a stock. It can be shredded and used as a raw vegetable in coleslaw. Plus, it’s pretty great for you.
Today, I took a tip from the super-knowledgeable Patricia Wells and made like the French and shredded it and tossed it with a mustard-y vinaigrette. This is my take on Celery Remoulade. The traditional recipe for Céleri Rémoulade calls for a homemade egg mayonnaise, but I substituted a simple olive oil, mustard and vinegar dressing with a teaspoon of jarred mayo (shock! horror!) to bind it nicely. Don’t forget to season well with salt and pepper.
To prepare this strange-looking vegetable into something edible, slice off the tops (keep them! make a batch of Bloody Marys!), then quarter the rest of the bulb. Use a vegetable peeler (my preference) or a small knife to cut off all of the brown fibrous parts. You’ll be left with the pristine white inside. Using your food processor with the shredding blade (or a box grater) shred the chunks and then mix with the vinaigrette.
Serve this with a few more crudités and you’ve got what’s essentially a salad, but a lot less boring and a lot more refined.