Celery Root Puree
1 large bulb celery root (or 2 small)
Cream, to cover
Salt and cayenne pepper, to taste
Walnut vinegar, to taste
Makes 4 to 6 servings
Peel celery root, either with a knife or peeler. Cut into even pieces, about 1 inch. Put in a small sauce pan and cover with cream. Put on stove and bring to a slow simmer, being careful to not let cream boil over. Simmer until tender. Strain the celery root and reserve the cream. Put celery root in a blender or food processor. Add some of the reserved cream, starting with just a little and added as necessary to achieve your desired consistency, processing until smooth. (The consistency you want will vary according to what you are serving it with. I generally like to make mine thinner rather than thicker.) Season with salt and a pinch of cayenne. (I like to use it instead of black pepper for this dish so it doesn't have black spots in it.) Add walnut vinegar at the end, starting with 1 to 2 teaspoons. Mix in and taste, add more according to your preference but a light or subtle touch allows the celery root to shine. Serve with seared salmon, roasted chicken or lamb, or roasted winter squash.
Green Bean Salad
2 pounds green beans, blanched and shocked
1/2 small red onion, shaved
1 pint baby heirloom tomatoes, skins removed (remove stem and score tomato, blanch in water that is at a rolling boil in small batches, or in hot oil, for 30 seconds and place in ice bath)
Candied, or toasted, walnuts (optional)
1 small shallot minced
2 Tablespoons walnut vinegar
2 cups heavy cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Makes 6 to 8 servings
In a small bowl add shallots and vinegar. Whisk in cream and season with salt and pepper to taste. Dressing will keep for up to one week.
In a larger bowl, add green beans, onions, tomatoes. Add half the dressing and toss gently until beans are evenly coated. Add more dressing as desired. Serve on a large plate and top with candied walnuts.
Read all about walnut vinegar here.