If you’ve ever wondered what vegetable is considered the ugliest in North America, it is celeriac. But don’t judge a book by its cover. Celeriac, also called celery root, is related to celery although it is not the actual root of the leafy green celery that we all recognize. It is also related to parsnips and parsley. Celeriac is a starchy vegetable with has a celery-like flavour that is delicious roasted, mashed, eaten raw in a salad, or added to soups. I decided to roast it with apples, onions, garlic and herbs to make a sweet an earthy Roasted Celeriac and Apple Soup.
A gnarly vegetable
Celeriac is very gnarly on one end and has a knob on the other end. The gnarly part is the bottom and is part of the tight tangle of roots. To prepare celeriac, cut off the gnarly roots and the knob at the top and peel it like you would turnip or rutabaga. Don’t try to salvage these small, soil-filled pieces of root unless you have a lot of patience. You could wash them and toss them into a “stock container” for making soup stock when the time is right. It is best to cut celeriac just when you’re ready to cook or use it since the flesh will oxidize once the outer covering is removed.
The first time I ever ate celeriac was a few years ago when we were invited to join our neighbours at their farm for a community Thanksgiving dinner. Some of us brought desserts or appetizers, but most picked vegetables from the farm, prepared them at home and brought them to the Thanksgiving dinner. Celeriac was one of the vegetables grown on the farm and prepared for the feast enjoyed in the greenhouse. The celeriac was mashed, creamy and delicious, with that subtle celery taste, and I was hooked.
Celeriac has a number of health benefits
- Contains antioxidants to combat inflammation and oxidative stress that leads to diseases like cancer and heart disease
- Contains potassium, which is linked to lowered risk of stroke
- Is a source of B vitamins, important for digestive health and nervous system function
- Is a good source of fiber to improve digestion
- Is a good source of vitamin K, which is important for blood clotting and bone health
- Contains phosphorous, calcium, iron and magnesium, minerals needed for cell metabolism and energy production.
Pick up a celeriac and some apples on your next visit to the farmer’s market and give this soup a try.
For other soup recipes, check out these:
- Leek, Carrot and Thyme Soup
- Creamy Corn Chowder
- Mushroom Lentil Soup
- Mushroom, Miso and Bok Choy Soup
- Roasted Garlic, Cauliflower and Bean Soup
- Carrot, Ginger and Red Lentil Soup
- Leek, Broccoli and Sweet Potato Soup
Roasted Celeriac and Apple Soup
- 1 lb celeriac 4 cups, peeled and cubed
- 2 large apples peeled and quartered (2 cups)
- 1 onion cut into 8 chunks
- 4 clove garlic smashed
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- ½ tsp dried rosemary
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Heat oven to 400°.
- Spread celeriac, apples, onions and garlic on parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle avocado oil over vegetables and apples. Sprinkle salt, pepper, rosemary and thyme over vegetables and apples.
- Roast for 35 minutes.
- Transfer roasted vegetables and apples to a large saucepan and add vegetable stock and lemon juice.
- Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Puree soup using an immersion blender.