Some flavours just seem to go together, to the point where they’ve become almost married in our minds, and it seems odd to have one without the other. Beetroot and goat’s cheese, butternut squash and sage, basil and tomato, salt and pepper. Ok, that last example might be taking things a bit too far, but you get the picture- sometimes, ingredients just seem made for one another.
But what about those combinations that surprise us? Some pairings (cheddar and apple, chocolate and chili) seem odd at first, but work just as well, and quickly become as “matched” in our minds as any of those previously mentioned. I think celeriac and apple is one of these combinations- the mild earthiness of celeriac is a perfect counterpoint to the sweet-and-sour flavour that is apple.
It seems not everyone agrees; a few weeks ago, a Celeriac and Apple soup was the special at work, and didn’t attract as much love as I thought it deserved. More than one potential customer walked in, read the specials board, and walked out again. I thought it might have been the apple; perhaps people weren’t jazzed by the idea of the fruit in their lunchtime soup? A co-worker’s wager was that the celeriac was the culprit; it just isn’t a ”popular” vegetable.
Whatever the reason, I didn’t mind. When my lunch break rolled around, the soup’s lack of popularity simply meant that there was some left for me! You might be a sceptic too, but I’m betting you won’t be for long once you try this winning combination.
- Celeriac and Apple Soup
- serves 4
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large celeriac (roughly 700g), peeled and chopped into 1″ cubes
1 large potato (roughly 350g), peeled and chopped into 1″ cubes
1.5 litres vegetable stock
2 large dessert apples, cored, peeled and chopped into 1″ cubes
salt and pepper, to taste
up to 3 Tbs. lemon juice (optional)
cream, buttermilk or olive oil (to serve)
- 1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan and add the onion. Cook for 5-8 minutes over medium heat, until soft and translucent.
2. Add the celeriac and potato and stir until well coated; cook for another minute or two. Pour in the stock and bring to a boil, then turn down and simmer the mixture for 20-25 minutes, until both celeriac and potato are tender.
3. Add the apple to the soup and cook for a further 5 minutes, until the apple has softened. Remove soup from heat and purée using an immersion blender. Taste, and add salt and pepper as needed. If your apples were very sweet, you may want to add some or all of the lemon juice, as well. Serve hot, drizzled with cream, buttermilk or olive oil.