Have you ever seen this funky looking orb at the market and thought, “what the hell is this?” I’m guessing that’s most people’s reaction, at least in America since celeriac is less popular there than in Europe. However, it is a delicious and nutritious food that makes a fantastic side, so in this guide I am going to teach you how to cook celeriac!
The ingredient celeriac can be cooked a few different ways, but it is generally prepared as a side dish. However many people think cooking celeriac is difficult because it is such an odd and rough looking thing. Have no fear; In this guide I’ll show you two easy ways of cooking this tasty and healthy root.
What Is Celeriac?
Celeriac is also known as celery root. It is the part that grows underground while the more recognizable celery stalks and leaves grow aboveground. However do not mistake celeriac for the root of the long celery you would see in your local grocery store and use in things like a Bloody Mary or chopped up in a crab salad. This variety is grown purely for the root. Although the stalk and leaves have started gaining traction as a use in fine dining.
You are more likely to find Celeriac in Europe, especially Northern and Eastern Europe, since it is considered a staple crop. It is extremely hardy, and can last months in a cool, dark place – making it a great potato substitute.
How To Cook Celeriac
Before cooking a celeriac you have to peel it. Unlike a potato, there is no version of celeriac where the hard skin is edible. It isn’t poisonous, just extremely tough and unpleasant. So, you have to peel it.
The easiest way to peel a celeriac is to use a vegetable peeler for the flat-ish even parts, and a knife for the rough parts. Near the top there is a knot where many of the stalks shot out from so that area is best done with a sharp knife.
The peeled celeriac should look like the photo above. It is a lumpy, splotchy, cream to tan colored spheroid that smells strongly of celery. At this point you can determine which cooking method you want to use for this celeriac. I am going to show you two of my go-to ways to cook celeriac.
The first way to cook celeriac is to simply roast it. This is really no different than roasting any root vegetable like carrots, beets, parsnips, or potato.
Cut the celeriac into cubes around 1-1.5 inch (2.5-4cm) in size. Place them in a bowl with a couple tablespoons of good quality olive oil. Then add your favorite roast vegetable seasonings.
Here is a simple seasoning blend that I often use:
- Salt 1 tsp
- Garlic Powder 1 tsp
- Paprika 1 tsp
- Dry Oregano 1 tsp
- Dry Basil 1 tsp
- Dry Rosemary 1 tsp
- Ground Mustard Seed 1/2 tsp
- Ground Coriander Seed 1/2 tsp
Feel free to use that or adjust it to suit your preferences. While I did give measurements I often taste a bit of the blend after and adjust if I feel the need so go ahead and use it as an outline.
Spread out your celeriac cubes on a baking tray. I line mine with a silicone mat but you can use parchment paper if you prefer. Then place the tray in an oven preheated to 200C or 400F.
Roast the celeriac for 15 minutes, then remove the tray, flip them, and put the tray back in the oven for another 15 minutes.
Voila! A super easy way to cook celeriac. Now when you want to impress guests with your culinary skills you can present a side they might not have ever tried before.
What To Serve With Roast Celeriac
You can serve roast celeriac with any dish you would serve any roast root vegetable. Some of my favorites are:
To make a mashed celeriac, chop the root into cubes just like with the roast version. Place them in a pot and add just enough water to cover them. Boil for 20-30 minutes (depending on size) and they are done with a fork can smash it easily. Drain, add some butter, salt, and pepper, and mash until you reach the desired consistency.
You can also add them to a stand mixer and whip them. Celeriac is far less starchy than potatoes, so you don’t need to worry about them becoming gluey.
Celeriac Nutritional Information
Per 100g of Raw Celeriac
|Dietary Fiber||1.8 g|
|Pantothenic Acid||0.352 mg|
|Vitamin B6||0.165 mg|
|Vitamin C||8 mg|
|Vitamin K||41 μg|
How Long Does Celeriac Last
Mentioned earlier, raw celeriac can last on average 6-8 months, however in an underground cellar you might be able to extend even that. Over time you might notice some growth on the outside skin of the celeriac but that is okay, it will come off when you peel it. Also over time you will notice the interior might become more and more hollow. Even a fresh celeriac can have a little hollow area in the middle, but over time it will expand as the root dries out.
Cooked celeriac can last up to a week sealed in a refrigerator.