I made this soup after I returned home from spending a weekend with my friends Annie and Andrew at their home in Wiltshire. On the Saturday Annie and Andrew took me to Salisbury where there is a very good market in the main square – a proper market with vegetable stalls, fruit sellers, butchers, a cheesemonger (maybe two) and all manner of stalls with delicious foods to buy. One of my purchases was the celeriac – the other was a brace of pheasant which were locally sourced (and shot) and are now residing in my freezer – the subject of a future post. I must say that the Salisbury saturday market is reason enough to move there.
What you’ll need for four people as a soup/first course:
- One celeriac approximately 1kg in weight
- One medium-sized onion peeled and cut in half
- One small to medium-sized potato peeled and cut in half or quarters*
- 1.5 litres vegetable stock
- Salt and pepper
What you’ll need to do:
- Prepare the celeriac by trimming off the thick knobbly roots. Then, either using a potato peeler or a sharp knife, ‘skin’ the celeriac. If you are using a knife be careful not to take off chunks of the vegetable with the skin. The skin is easy to trim away so not much force is needed.
- Cut celeriac into chunks
- Make up the vegetable stock in a large saucepan and bring to the boil.
- Add the celeriac, onion and potato to the stock and reduce to a simmer. Cover with saucepan lid and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes.
- Check that the celeriac and potato are cooked and if so turn off the heat and allow the mixture to cool.
- Once the broth and vegetables are cooled sufficiently transfer to a liquidiser and whizz until smooth.
- Return soup to a clean saucepan and season with salt and a little pepper if you wish. Remember, the stock will have salt in it so you may not need to add more.
- As you are warming the soup prior to serving pour in the cream a little at a time to your liking. Once you have added the cream don’t let the soup boil as the cream may separate.
* I include a potato because it acts as a natural thickening agent. If you prefer a thinner soup then you may either omit the potato altogether or add more stock after you have blended the soup. I think the potato adds a little silkiness to the overall texture.
** If you wish to keep the calories down then you can ditch the cream – the soup will be just as delicious without it. Oh yes, I use double cream myself.
As a post-script I would like to thank my friend June Lim of Singapore who suggested I should put the picture of the finished dish at the top of the recipe and not at the bottom.