Celeriac is not a pretty vegetable. Resembling the shruken-heads of some jungle tribe, they sit a little neglected on the green grocers shelves in England. Many customers are either put off by their unaesthetic appearance while others are just baffled with what to do with this chunky pale root. But ignore the celeriac at your peril because under its ugly surface lurks a flesh that is crispy when raw, silky smooth when cooked and that has a delicate taste which suggests the flavours of celery of which brows above ground if allowed.
Celeriac is derived from wild celery. It's unclear when celeriac was first cultivated but there are references to it dating back to as early as the seventeenth century. Today celeriac is uncommon outside of Europe and is not widely used in Britain but it is popular in France where it is used in the classic dish 'céleri rémoulade'.
Often eaten with summer picnics this simple dish is also welcome at any winter table here in Burgundy. Winters in Burgundy are cold. While her famous vines hibernate, her hard working inhabitants toil in the vines burning vines branches under tidy plumes of smoke. After a day of heavy mud, stiff fingers and freezing temperatures it is simple, hearty food that Burgundians crave. Slow cooked stews of root vegetables and sinuous cuts of meat bubble all day to warm kitchens. But as a change from slurping over a steaming bowl a simple remoulade makes a welcome change. With a healthy dollop of Dijon mustard and a splash of white wine vinegar it is Burgundy through and through. Bon Ap!
- 1 celeriac, cut into chunks
- ½ lemon, juice only
- 2 tbsp fresh yogurt
- 3 tbsp good-quality mayonnaise
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- splash of white wine vinegar
- salt and white pepper
1. With the special grating gadget on your magi-mix shred the celeriac into matchstick shape strips. Place the celeriac strips into a bowl along with the lemon and juice and toss to combine.
2. Mix the yogurt, mayonnaise and mustard together then stir into the celeriac.
3. Season with salt and white pepper.
4. Place in the fridge for a couple of hours to get all those flavours working together.