As was demonstrated with celeriac chips, celery root can produce foods you would not expect from it's rugged exterior. Instead of a delicately crispy chip, this time celeriac is transformed into a silky, rich, and elegant soup. There are a lot of directions you can take a blended root vegetable soup, such as the addition of bacon or blending with apples, but I think this combination of nutmeg, chive, and truffle oil is ethereal and satisfying. Serves 4.
- 1 tablespoon butter (can substitute olive oil if a vegan soup is desired)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large leek, trimmed of rugged dark green leaves and thinly sliced
- 1/4 teaspon sea salt, plus more to season as needed
- 1-2 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
- One large celery root (about 1.5-pounds), peeled and chopped into cubes
- 2 cups chicken stock (can substitute water or vegetable stock if a vegan soup is desired)
- 2-3 cups water
- 1.5 teaspoons freshly-ground white pepper
- Fresh nutmeg, to grind over top
- Truffle oil, to drizzle
- About 2 tablespoons diced fresh chives (a little less than most bunches)
In a large pot, melt butter with olive oil on medium low heat.
Add the leeks and garlic and cook for about five minutes, stirring frequently. Add the salt and continue to cook until the leeks and garlic are soft and translucent, about another 5 minutes. If the pot begins to brown too much on the bottom as they cook, add more butter or olive oil.
Add the celery root, stock, and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a strong simmer. Cook, with the lid to the pot ajar on top, until the celery root pieces are soft and easily pierced with a paring knife, about 30-45 minutes.
Add white pepper then purée using an immersion blender, or let the soup cool to room temperature and purée in a food processor until smooth. Taste season with additional salt and pepper if desired. If the soup is too thick, it can be thinned with remaining part of cup of water to desired consistency.
Serve with a drizzle of truffle oil, a few gratings of nutmeg, and a scatter of chives.