Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Creamy & Comforting Puree of Celery Root & Yukon Gold Potato Soup

Tonight, I had totally different plans for dinner. But, my lunch break went awry-- that is, I had to run an unexpected errand instead of treating myself to a quiet lunch at my favorite local Thai restaurant. Instead, I grabbed a take-out lunch of Yakitori Chicken with steamed rice-- that I wolfed down in about 5 minutes, flat.  Five hours later, my lunch felt like it was still in the pit of my stomach.  A light supper seemed like a necessity, so I decided to make something with this--

Isn't that an ugly thing to behold?

This is a celery root-- or "Celeriac".  I have grown fond of this vegetable. It has a very mild celery flavor with a slight note of parlsey.  It's lovely in gratins. I also love it, combined with potatoes as a lovely puree with short ribs.  I'll have to make that dish again. But tonight, I wanted to make a soup with this.


Preparing celery root, reminds me of preparing pineapple. I lop off the top, cut off the side and then I'm ready to roll.  I've done the same with four medium sized Yukon Gold Potatoes and I've sliced two garlic cloves.
NOTE:  If I had a full head of garlic, I would have roasted it for this soup. Alas, I didn't, so this was the game plan.

Leeks are perfect for the kind of soup I wanted. They're much milder than regular onions. If you're not familiar with how to clean out the soil from leeks, click here. I have a tutorial on how I do it. Just come back. I'll wait...

The rest is easy.  In a Dutch Oven, add a little olive oil. Saute' the leeks, until tender-- 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic and saute' until fragrant-- about a minute....tops. You don't want to burn the leeks nor garlic, so I use a medium heat.  Now, add the celery root and potatoes.

Add one quart of homemade chicken stock.  I defrosted one of my frozen homemade roasted chicken stock-- see how dark and rich the broth is?  I just love the depth of flavor when I make chicken stock from roasted poultry-- it makes a world of difference. You should try it, sometime. I show you how right here.   Now, put a lid on it and cook until fork tender-- about 25 minutes.
I think immersion blenders are one of the most useful kitchen toys tools to own.  I wish I could buy one for each person who reads my blog. I would!  Otherwise, you have to puree this soup, in batches, in a blender. My $20.00 immersion blender (15 years old and going strong) pureed my soup in minutes!  I decided to add 1/8 teaspoon of white pepper-- purely for looks-- I didn't want flecks of black pepper.  I added about 1/4 cup of heavy cream, which isn't a whole lot. You can add skim milk, if you choose. From start to finish, this took 45 minutes.

Luckily, I had some creme fraiche and I cut some fresh chives. There you have it!  A simple, "clean" soup-- mild tasting, yet flavorful-- with notes of celery and the thickness of the potatoes.  I always add some fresh lemon juice to my cream or pureed soups.  This made six bowls of soup. We ate three, between us.  We both loved this light supper-- especially with a glass of white wine and a salad.

It feels good to eat something so simple, yet satisfying-- especially with all the Christmas chocolates, cookies and my adventure with my new deep fryer on Sunday.  This is a pretty healthy soup!  If you've never tried celery root-- pick one up the next time you're in the produce section. It's probably in the Ugly Vegetable section, next to ginger root and a few other oddball kinds of produce.  Be sure to buy some leeks, though.  Together, you get delicious soup!  I'm sending this recipe off to Deb at Kahakai Kitchen for her Souper Sunday Roundup.



Three more days till vacation! Tick, tock...






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15 comments:

TKW said...

Looks so good! The finished soup, that is, not the celeriac. How stoned was the first person who figured out how to eat that stuff?

And I agree, 1/4 cup of cream isn't much at all and yet it adds so much depth!

Natashya Kitchen Puppies said...

What a gorgeous soup! Very elegant and delicious.
And congrats on winning the Old Bay below! I hope they bring some up to Canada.

George Gaston said...

Debby... I would loved to have had a cup of this yesterday ~ it was rainy & cold; so I know this would have hit the spot. That celery root may not look attractive, but it sure does pack a lot of flavor. Wonderful recipe to add to my soup collection. Many thanks..

Cheryl said...

Wow that looks and sounds delish, you are so creative! I dont think I have ever seen celery root at my grocery store, but again I have not looked for it, LOL!

Saveurs et Gourmandises said...

Je découvre un beau blog.
BRAVO pour toutes ces recettes.
Je reviendrai.

Mary said...

What a gorgeous soup. It sounds like you are really looking forward to vacation. Me thinks we'll see lots of good food in the weeks to come :-).

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I have never worked with celeriac, and it is indeed an unattractive vegetable - but you turned the ugly duckling into a swan ... or a soup ...

Cristie said...

I love the pictures! I really want to make this soup- it looks so . . . . comforting. I'll report in when I make it.

Monica H said...

Well you don't have to buy me an immersion blender because I have one and love it! It makes things so much easier, doesn't it?

This bowl of creamy comfort looks lovely Debby.

BTW, no I did not get a new camera. Same one I've always used :-)

Pam said...

Creamy and delicous - it looks so good.

tiny house said...

This is a soup for the heart and for the cold weather! I like it! I just tried this and it made me feel good.

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Celery root is definitely not a vegetable that will win beauty contests. It is absolutely wonderful in soup. This looks like a delicious light dinner, but I can also see myself eating it for lunch.

Debinhawaii said...

Gorgeous bowl of soup. I need to cook with some celery root--it is a veggie that I have not ever cooked with.

cookeaze said...

Looks delicious and nice clicks!Thanks for sharing your talent..

Kyle@ blooming tea said...

Wow, looks really delicious! this is a soup for the soul, a healthy food. I'd love to make one, too bad I can't find any celery in our local grocery store, I'm from Philippines by the way:)