50g butter 300gr onions, peeled and chopped 300gr potatoes, peeled and chopped 500gr Jerusalem artichokes, peeled (or just scrubbed clean if fresh) and chopped Salt & freshly ground pepper 1 litre chicken stock 300ml creamy milk a handful of crispy bacon pieces and crispy croutons for the garnish.
Melt butter, add onions, potatoes, artichokes, season with salt & pepper, stir and sweat in gentle heat for 10mins. Add stick and cook until vegetables are tender. Liquidise and return to heat. Thin to required consistency with creamy milk and taste for seasoning. Garnish with chopped parsley and crispy bacon pieces and crispy croutons.
Celeriac Slaw (from Muriel)
Ingredients: 2-3 large carrots 1/2 celeriac (about 400g)
For the dressing: 4tbs Mayonnaise 2tsp English mustard juice 1/2 lemon or cider vinegar 1tbs caraway seed slightly toasted in dry pan sea salt and fresh black pepper
Method: Coarsely grate celeriac and carrots. Beat all ingredients for dressing, pour over grated veg and stir thoroughly Allow flavours to develop for an hour of two before serving
Aideen's Jerusalem Artichokes with Garlic and Bay Leaves
What Jamie Oliver has to say about Jerusalem Artichokes
Jerusalem artichokes are sweet and almost garlicky and mushroomy and gorgeous. Although called artichokes they’re actually tubers – like rough and ready potatoes. You can scrub and roast them whole like mini jacket potatoes and split them open, drizzled with a little chilli oil. You can even use them in a salad with smoky bacon. A Jerusalem artichoke’s best friends are sage, thyme, butter, bacon, bay, cream, breadcrumbs, cheese and anything smoked.
To serve 4, you will need 600g/1lb 6oz of Jerusalem artichokes. Peel them, then cut them into chunks. Place them in an oiled frying pan and fry on a medium heat until golden on both sides, then add a few bay leaves, 2 cloves of garlic, finely sliced, a splash of white wine vinegar, some salt and pepper, and place a lid on top. After about 20 to 25 minutes they will have softened up nicely and you can remove the lid and the bay leaves. Continue cooking for a couple of minutes to crisp the artichoke slices up one last time, then serve straight away. Personally, I think they go well with both meat and fish and are particularly good in a plate of antipasti, or in soups or warm salads.
Muriel's Celeriac Soup
50g butter 1 large celeriac, about 1kg, peeled and roughly chopped 350g leeks, sliced 100g potatoes, peeled and diced 1 onion , chopped 2 garlic cloves, chopped 1ltr veg or chicken stock 100ml double cream
Method: Add butter,celeriac,leek, potatoes, onion and garlic to a heavy based pan, season well and sauté for about 10min until the veg begin to soften. Add stock, bring to boil then simmer for 20-25 min’s until celeriac is tender Puree the soup and return to pan and reheat add more stock or water if necessary. Add cream and check seasoning before serving
All about Salsify & Scorzonera
Two members of the daisy family, salsify and scorzonera are usually taken together as vegetables because they are related, similar in growth and cooked in similar fashion. The are both root crops, used during winter. The roots resemble those of a large dandelion to which they are, of course, related also. Both species are considered native to the Mediterranean region although they have naturalised over much wider territory in Europe and North America. The salsify is Tragopogon porrifolius, related to the wild goat's beard which occasionally arrive unannounced in gardens, thanks to its dandelion-like, but much larger, parachutes. Salsify has blue-purple daisy flowers while the scorzonera, Scorzonera hispanica, has yellow flowers and leaves several times broader than the narrow leek-like leaves of salsify. Both vegetables have been grown and used in Europe for centuries, though little used here. Salsify is sometimes called ‘vegetable oyster' because of a supposed similarity of flavour to oysters. Both germinate readily and are easy enough to grow but must be grown well to avoid having too-skinny roots that are a nuisance to prepare. Salsify has white-skinned roots, scorzonera has brown-black ones. The salsify is a biennial flowering the seocnd year while scorzonera is perennial, the roots thickening in the second year, but also becoming more coarse.
Cooking salsify and scorzonera There are two ways of cooking these vegetables: the roots can be washed, and boiled or steamed before peeling when cold. They are used in stews, casseroles, baked dishes and soups, and cooked before use in stir-fries, and can be sliced and fried too. The new growth at the top of the plants can also be used in spring, cooked like asparagus or used is salads. These tops can be forced in darkness, much as chicory, which is also related. The food value of the roots is limited but they are a source of fibre while the green tops and flower buds have useful amounts of vitamin C.
Scorzonera with Cheese Sauce
Scorzonera is a winter vegetable, best from November - February. It is deep rooted 25 to 40 cm and he roots are quite brittle, easily broken and will discolour if the root is broken. They are often called the vegetable oyster as the flavour is delicate (though not at all fishy!) and it is important to not ‘drown’ the flavour with stronger ones.
The skin is quite tough and it is helpful to get rid of this beforehand – scald, steam or lightly boil the roots for a few minutes, then peel the tough skin from the roots. This should come off easily but, if not, use a peeler or sharp knife.
Apart from cooking, you can stop the roots from discolouring by sprinkling with something acidic (lemon juice or a mild vinegar – eg tarragon, cider). When the skins have been removed, cut the roots into lengths approx. 8 – 10 cm and place in a shallow oven-proof dish.
Make a cheese sauce: 30gm margarine (1oz) ¼ litre milk (½ pint) or veg stock 25 gm (1 oz) breadcrumbs- brown or white Salt and pepper – to taste 30gm plain flour (1oz) 60gm (30gm) cheese – cheddar is good though a more flavoursome one, like Stilton or other blue cheese is excellent – but don’t overpower the flavour of the vegetable
Melt the margarine in a saucepan and add the seasoning and flour.
Cook gently until the flour is cooked out – do NOT allow it to ‘catch’ or to brown.
Add the liquid gently – little by little – stirring frequently until all the liquid has been added.
Bring to the boil briefly then turn off the heat and add the cheese, allowing it to melt into the sauce.
Pour the sauce over the salsify (or scorzonera) and sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the top. If you wish, some extra grated cheese can be added to the breadcrumbs.
Bake in a hot oven 180c for 15mins or grill until golden.
Put all ingrediants into large pan (make sure it is not aluminium, brass or copper as it can release toxins into chutney - use only stainless steel) and bring to boil. Stir until sugar has disolved.
Simmer mixture over moderate heat for 1 hr (for longer if making bigger batches) until thick and pulpy.
Pour into sterilised jars and seal immediately.
Scorzonera Greek Style
2 lb (900 g) scorzonera (black salsify)
approx. 14 fl oz (400 ml) chicken stock
juice of 2 lemons
1 medium-sized onion
2 tbsp chopped parsley
4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tbsp plain flour
3 egg yolks
salt and pepper
Set the stock to heat to boiling. Stir the juice of 1 lemon into a large bowl of cold water.
Trim, wash and peel the scorzonera one root at a time. As each root is peeled, cut it lengthwise into thick slices; cut each of these into 1 1/2 in (4 cm) lengths and remove any of the hard, woody central section from each piece with a sharp knife. Drop these into the bowl of acidulated water to prevent them discolouring.
Chop the onion finely. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan and fry the onion gently with the chopped parsley for a few minutes, until tender.
Drain the scorzonera well, add to the pan and saute for 5 minutes. Add a pinch of salt, sprinkle with the flour and continue stirring for 1 minute to cook the flour and distribute it evenly.
Add approx. 16 fl oz (450 ml) of the boiling hot stock and stir well. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes, adding a little more hot stock when needed.
When the scorzonera is tender, turn down the heat as low as possible and make a thickening liaison by beating the egg yolks with the juice of the second lemon and 2 tbsp of the hot stock in a small bowl. Sprinkle over the scorzonera and continue cooking, stirring continuously, over a very low heat for 1-2 minutes.
The egg yolk will thicken the sauce a little and make it slightly creamy; as soon as it does, remove from the heat. This is not meant to be a thick sauce. Continue stirring for half a minute off the heat, correct the seasoning and serve without delay.
Cook parsnips in a pan of boiling salted water for 2 mins, then tip in the celeriac and boil together for 8 mins. Drain well, then mash with butter and cream. Season, then add a grating of nutmeg, stir in the sage and spoon into a buttered ovenproof dish. Make up to this stage 1 day ahead or freeze for one month. Defrost in fridge overnight.
Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Mix breadcrumbs, Parmesan, almonds and oil together. Season, scatter over the mash, then bake for 35-40 mins from cold, 25-30 mins if not, until topping is crisp and golden. (http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/3061/parsnip-and-celeriac-bake)
Remove the leaves taking care not to cut into the beetroot as it will bleed into the water and loose a lot of it’s deep colour. Keep the leaves to steam like spinach. Wash the beets well and place in a pot with plenty of water. Bring to a boil, cover with a lid and cook until tender. To check insert a sharp knife into the beet. Small beetroots will take about 15 minutes to cook while the larger can take from 40 minutes to an hour. When cooked, run under cold water, rub gently and the skin will come away very easily.
While still warm slice thinly. Arrange on a plate and sprinkle generously with brown rice vinegar. Brown rice vinegar is a delicious vinegar that can be used like any other vinegar. It is made from well water and organic brown rice which is aged for several months in earthenware crocks. It has a full bodied but subtle sweetness that complements beetroot beautifully.
The cooked beetroot can be seasoned with any other vinegar that’s in your kitchen cupboard. Have fun trying the different flavours.
Beetroot and Goats Cheese Salad
12-15 baby beetroot
2 tbsp lemon juice
80ml extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
70g baby spinach leaves and some small beetroot leaves
A bunch of flat-leaf parsley leaves, roughly chopped
100g soft goat's cheese, crumbled
75g toasted walnuts
Twist off the leaves from the beetroot (don’t cut, this causes them to bleed), leaving about 2 inches of stalk attached to the beet. Wash them well and pat dry. Place them in a tinfoil parcel and bake in a hot (220 degrees Celsius) oven for about 35-45 minutes. They will be very tender when cooked – pierce with a knife to check.
Take a beetroot and rinse under a cold tap (so you can handle it), then quickly remove the skin by rubbing with your fingers – if it is well cooked, it should come off easily. Repeat with all the beetroot and cut them in to quarters. Whisk the lemon juice, olive oil and mustard together in a small bowl. Season to taste.
Place the spinach, beetroot leaves and chopped parsley in a large bowl. Add half the dressing and toss well. Divide among 4 serving plates (or leave in the large bowl if desired), then scatter with beetroot, goat's cheese and toasted walnuts. Garnish the salad with some parsley, drizzle with the remaining dressing and serve immediately.