My partner and I get a weekly vegbox from a local nursery which encourages us to eat seasonally and ensure we get our vegetables. It’s made our cooking much more adventurous, especially during a particularly intense run of beetroots, but sometimes we are stumped by what arrives. That was the case when a gnarly, muddy, brain-like celeriac arrived last week. Celeriac looks a bit like a turnip and smells a lot like celery, and BBC good food call it ‘the unsung hero of the vegetable world’. I decided you can’t go wrong with a soup, and I’d been hankering after a chowder, so I amalgamated a range of chowder recipes to produce this using what I had. I’m pleased to say it was so successful I had it for pudding (which is fortunate, as it makes around 8 servings). Alas, I ate it before in photographing, but it’s appeal isn’t visual anyway. Rather, it is a creamy, comforting bowl of vegetables, perfect for a winter’s evening.
2 tbsp olive oil
3 spring onions
3 garlic cloves
Three medium potatoes
4 cups of stock (I used vegetable bouillon)
Salt and pepper to season
150 ml double cream (or vegan alternative)
2 cobs of sweetcorn
Warm olive oil gently in a large pan. Slice the leek (I halved and then sliced as I prefer the texture that way) and the spring onions. Add them to the pan and soften. Slice the garlic cloves and add them after a few minutes. Soften over a gentle heat for 5-8 minutes. Throw a bit of water in if it’s seeming dry.
Peel and chop the celeriac and potatoes into rough cubes and add them to the pan when the leeks and garlic are soft. Add salt and pepper, and stir them and fry them for five minutes to get them rough round the edges.
Add the stock, and put on a long low simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove two to three ladles of soup and blend, then return to the pan. This depends on the texture you want - for chunkier, blend less.
Add the sweetcorn and double cream and simmer for another 10 minutes.
Taste, add salt and pepper if needs be, and serve!