King Celeriac Meets the Olive Oil Uptown

7 April 2016

This week Knidos Cookery Club turns its attentions to celeriac – a knobbly root vegetable of the same family as celery. Celeriac bulbs impart an earthy, nutty flavour with a strident undernote of celery.

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Celeriac, kereviz in Turkish, is found all around the Mediterranean and grows in the cooler months of autumn and winter. It can be used raw and grated into a salad, roasted as a main course, boiled as a side dish, served as mash or in a tasty soup.

In Turkey it’s often served up as a cold side-dish in the zeytinyağlı style, which means it is braised in a generous portion of olive oil, a key ingredient of Turkish cooking.

Zeytinyağlı dishes can be made with any seasonal vegetables that are to hand – from green beans to leeks, and from artichokes to courgettes.

In this week’s recipe, based on Elizabeth Taviloğlu’s, we’ll show you how to get from this …

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… to this

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in a few easy steps using lemon and orange juice, and plenty of olive oil.

Ingredients

One celeriac bulb, peeled and cleaned, retain the stalks and leaves

Two medium carrots

One medium onion

Juice of half a lemon

Juice of two medium-sized oranges

125 ml good quality olive oil (extra virgin if you have it)

100 ml water

Method

Top and tail the celeriac then peel off all the dirt-covered hard outer skin to expose a white bulb. Wash the bulb to remove any lingering soil. Keep the stalks and leaves for later use.

Cut the celeriac in half and then into 0.5 cm slices. Place the slices in a heavy-based saucepan and cover with lemon and orange juice – this is to stop it discolouring.

Next cut the carrot into thin slices, and chop the onion and stalks from the celeriac roughly. Place the carrots, stalks and onion on top of the celeriac.

Pour 100 ml olive oil and 100 ml of water into the pan and bring to a boil.

After the mix boils, reduce the heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender – 20-30 minutes or so.

Allow to cool and then arrange on a plate and sprinkle with more chopped celeriac stalks and leaves. Add a generous drizzle of olive oil and serve.

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