We’ve been having another burst of cold weather lately, which always brings on a craving for comfort foods.  A big steaming bowl of vegetable soup is about the healthiest comfort food there is (sadly beating chocolate fudge cake hands down on that score!).  Celeriac is, frankly, an ugly vegetable, and you may have passed over it for that reason.  But it has a lovely fresh flavour and makes a delicious soup.  It’s also very satisfying to cut off all the rough bits and end up with a smooth, white, celery-scented root!  It’s nutritionally useful as it contains potassium and vitamin B6, as well as vitamin C.  A little cream, mascarpone or grated cheese stirred in at the end really enriches this soup if you’re looking for an extra indulgence, but it’s also perfect as it is!

Celeriac Soup
Celeriac Soup
Celeriac Soup

25g/1oz butter or vegan margarine
1 small onion, roughly chopped
1 stick celery, chopped
1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
1 medium celeriac root, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
175g/6oz potatoes, peeled and chopped
850ml/1 1/2 pints vegetable stock
2 bay leaves
Salt and black pepper

Heat the butter or margarine in a pan and add the onion, celery and ginger.  Stir to coat and cook gently for about 5 minutes.  Add the remaining vegetables, stir and cook for another 5 – 7 minutes.  Add the stock and the bay leaves, bring the liquid to the boil, then reduce heat to a simmer.

Cook the soup for about 20 minutes until all the vegetables are soft and the potato starting to break down into the water.  It is then best to blend the soup with blender or food processor until it is smooth.   Reheat the soup to serve.