In an attempt to not have to revamp my labels, I'll just make more recipes that fall into some of the others. How about a recipe that's not an entree? Lovely! I make a lot of simple sides that don't appear on the blog because they are just that - so easy they don't really warrant a scribe. But perhaps they are just simple enough for a follower to actually make. And perhaps that are just delicious enough to make in large batches that stand in for dinner when you're too lazy to make a real one (not that I feel like that every Wednesday or so).
"Celeriac" or celery root - ah hem - cough, cough - excuse me, what? The knobby, endearingly ugly root of our "favorite" health food is so much more delicious than it's flossy stalks, I'm not entirely sure why it's not more main stream. It is admittedly strange to look at, sort of like a balding pineapple that never perked up and developed a minor frown. "No body picks me." It's hairy, bumpy, and beige - not something that would stop many of us in our tracks.
Underneath that thick skin however is a flavor mild like celery with a rich potato-like texture which makes it ideal for mashing. With a high water content, it doesn't need any milk, cream or butter to make the mash smooth. In this recipe, I simmered the celery root as you might do with potatoes before mashing but with some whole spices in the cooking water to give it an aromatic flare. Then I topped it off with some "cheesy" components and a little special kick of white pepper. As stated earlier, I made a double batch and ate it for dinner. When I finished and wanted to make another batch, I knew it was time to write this one down.
Aromatic Mashed Celeriac with Kale
Cooke time: 10 minutes
1 lb Celeriac, peeled and cubed
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp cardamom pods
2 c. kale, chopped with ribs removed
1 T. nutritional yeast
1/4 scant tsp garlic powder
1/4 scant tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp allspice
1/8 tsp white pepper
Salt to taste
Place celeriac, fennel and cardamom in a medium sauce pan and fill with water under celeriac is just covered. Bring pot to a boil and reduce heat to medium low. Cover and simmer about 5-7 minutes, or until celeriac starts to become tender (insert a piece with a fork - if it goes through somewhat easily but the veg doesn't fall apart, you're good). Add kale and simmer another 4-5 minutes, or until kale is bright green and celeriac is completely tender. Drain and set aside in a medium bowl. Discard the cardamom pods.
Mix in remaining ingredients and mash mixture with a potato masher or fork. Mash until chunky but not completely smooth (kale will not break apart - that's a good thing). Season with salt to taste.