Maybe I should change my approach to this project. I think there are many others in the French Fridays with Dorie group that make their recipes well in advance, then post them – all ready to go, in anticipation of their Friday appointment. I don’t generally do that. Well, I’ve been known to, then to forget to actually post my results. 😦 On occasion (a long time ago, it seems), I could make the recipe early in the week or the weekend before, get my post all ready and schedule the actual publication. But usually, it’s Thursday and I’m trying to figure out how to get the recipe done and the post published, or like the last couple of times – to try to get it done at least on Friday! Sometime.That would be me this week.
I’ve never bought a celery root. Let alone cooked one. I probably thought that I didn’t really need another root vegetable in my life. Plus there’s the celery part. I’ve worked to bond with it this past year, thanks to Dorie. And my Mom. Once I started getting rid of the strings (my Mom always does this, and Dorie also discusses, helpfully), I’ve been using it more often, though it will never be a favorite in my book.
Today was a tough day for this as well, because I was torn in two different directions. Somehow, it already feels like the new year, and that Christmas and all of that fun is long past. Time to turn back to healthier living. To that end, I made some wonderful lentil-mushroom soup. Of course, I also got a very cool bread cloche for Christmas, so I had to bake a loaf of bread this morning. A bit of a tough assignment for our puree to follow those things!
But, because I love this group, and because I really did want to make the recipe, off I went to the most likely place to find a celery root – Whole Foods. Luckily I have one around the corner, so I don’t feel too bad about stopping in for something from time to time. I probably ruin their goals with my typical “basket size” (the average size of a customer’s total purchase or “basket”). I don’t mind though. Plenty of others to up their average.
Otherwise, pretty simple. To be honest, my process photos weren’t very clear, and since they really amounted to different variations on the theme of white stuff…. simply enough, the celery root, potato and a small amount of onion cut into chunks. Then added to a boiling, salted mixture of equal parts milk and water (thanks, Dorie, for the reminder of keeping an eye on the liquids – yes, that milk does foam up!) and cooked until tender. The vegetables are then strained well and pureed in a food processor with a bit of butter and white pepper. And that’s that.
One nice thing about this combination is that it can be made nice and creamy in the processor, since potatoes alone would end up a horrible, gray gluey mess. This was way lighter, and so that was nice too. The celery flavor was there, and depending on what you’re serving it with, could be tasty. But for me, this was kind of just ok. I’m sure it would be better with any of Dorie’s daubes. But it was fun to try, and wrap up another year with French Fridays with Dorie and our terrific group!
Happy New Year, all! I’m looking forward to cooking with you again in the New Year!