Roasted Celery Root

Roast Celery Root
Elaine Lemm
  • Total: 35 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings

The humble celery root is a much overlooked vegetable. It may not be the prettiest, but it's fantastic in flavor. While it does taste of celery, it's much softer in than the crunchy stalks and that means it's often overwhelmed by other ingredients. One way to really bring out celery root's flavor is to roast it. This method of cooking creates a lovely crispy exterior and meltingly soft interior—much like a good roast potato.

Once roasted, those flavors soar and the sugars caramelize, which adds another dimension. The vegetable then becomes a lovely side dish for roast meats and also makes a beautiful base vegetable for a soup. The root can also be added to a vegetable curry—once roasted, it doesn't get lost in the spices.

You can roast celery root in either olive oil (don't use your best extra virgin for this) or for even more added flavor, duck or goose fat—instructions for both are included in the recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 large celery root
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil or duck fat
  • Sea salt (to taste)
  • Freshly ground pepper (to taste)

Steps to Make It

Prep the Celery Root

  1. Gather your ingredients. Heat the oven to 400 F.

  2. Peel the celery root. This is a tricky vegetable to peel so, please read the instructions below on how to easily, and safely peel and cut it.

  3. It will be easier to cut the root in half first. This will provide a flat, stable surface for peeling and slicing. Always use a sturdy, sharp knife wide enough to cut the root in half. A chef's knife will be good for this.
    If you need the root whole (instead of slicing, then cut a slice across the bottom root to again to provide a flat surface.

  4. Once the root is stable on the worktop, peel with a sharp vegetable knife from the top down the curved sides. Keep the peeled root flat as for peeling when slicing.

  5. Cut the peeled root into 1/2-inch by 1-inch wide slices (some will be rectangular and some less so as the vegetable is round but don't worry about this).

    To Cook With Olive Oil

  6. Place the slices into a large baking bowl.

  7. Drizzle in the oil and stir well to coat all the slices.

  8. Spread the slices onto a heavy-based oven tray. Sprinkle with sea salt and a generous few grinds of black pepper and bake in the center of the oven for 30 minutes until crisp and golden.

Took Cook With Duck or Goose Fat:

  1. Put the fat into a deep heavy-based roasting dish. Put the dish into the center of the preheated oven and heat to hot (about 5 minutes).

  2. Place the slices into a large baking bowl and sprinkle with sea salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Stir well.

  3. Once the fat is heated, tip in the celery root, spread through the melted fat by gently shaking the pan, return to the oven and cook for 30 minutes until crisp and gold brown.

  4. You should not need to turn the roots during cooking is you are using a heavy pan. Check on the pieces in 15 minutes, just in case and turn if needed. Once cooked, remove from the oven and serve immediately.