Monday, 24 January 2011

Mashed Celeriac with Buttery Leeks

This is very similar to a dish of Parnips and Leeks I made in October. It works just as well with celeriac. The idea is to cook the leeks gently in plenty of butter until they are soft and the butter is infused with the leek flavour, which when mixed into the mashed celeriac carries the leek flavour throughout. I added a little potato just to mellow the celeriac a bit and give it a smoother texture, but not enough to make it taste particularly potatoey. The result is really quite amazing for such a simple list of ingredients and basic techniques. Of course, it's hard to go wrong with all that butter.

4 servings
45 minutes - 20 minutes prep time

Mashed Celeriac with Buttery Leeks
750 grams (1-2/3 pounds) celeriac
250 grams (1/2 pound) potatoes
1 large or 2 medium leeks
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
a grind of black pepper to finish

Peel the celeriac and cut it into chunks. Peel the potatoes and cut them into similar sized chunks. Put both in a pot with water to cover them generously. Bring to a boil and boil steadily until they are tender.

Meanwhile, wash and trim the leek. Cut it into thin slices. Rince them and drain them well.

Put the butter on to heat in a medium sized skillet. (Not too small - the celeriac and potatoes will be added to it.) Add the leeks to the butter and cook gently for about 15 minutes, stirring regularly. The leeks should soften and cook down, but don't let them get more than a very few slightly browned spots. Browned leeks are really not nice.

When the celeriac and potatoes are tender - don't forget to test them both - drain them well and return them to their pot. Mash them well, then turn the mash into the pan with the leeks. Continue cooking gently, while mixing the mash and the leeks together well.

This can be served at once, or it will hold on the stove for a few minute if the rest of the meal isn't quite ready.

Last year at this time I made Good Tasting Yeast Spread.

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