Monday, 4 March 2013

Celeriac & Chickpea Soup

Sylvia kindly brought me four, yes four of the celeriac she had grown; she does know I live on my own but no doubt has confidence that I will find something to do with them. What follows is the first of the recipes I managed to think up. It was during that time, in this case 4.20 this morning, when I was struggling to find a way back into sleep. I lay there hoping that each thought that I began may lead to the room with no floor that would take me straight back into deep sleep. It's remarkable how many of those rooms I visit these days before finding the one without a floor, I can be awake for at least an hour. During my wanderings this morning, I remembered that I had some cooked chickpeas in the fridge and that I could incorporate them into a soup made with one of the celeriac. With the remaining three celeriac staring at me I came up with the pakora recipe, they make an ideal accompaniment, click here for the recipe

To make this soup you will need:
3 sticks of celery,
3 cloves of garlic
2 small leeks
1 large celeriac
1 cupful of chopped parsley
300g of cooked chickpeas
3 litres of vegetable stock
lots of freshly ground white pepper
40g of unsalted butter
1 tablespoon of olive oil

Begin by chopping up the vegetables, sweat them gently in a large pan in the olive oil over a low heat until they are tender, stirring every few minutes to avoid the vegetables taking on any colour. Add the stock, pepper and the chopped parsley and cook covered for 10 minutes before adding the cooked chickpeas. Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little before blending in batches in a jug blender. You can use a stick blender but the final texture will be coarser. Pop the butter into the last batch of soup in the blender.
Heat through and serve.

The addition of butter rather than cream, as readers of my blog will know, produces a rich creamy texture and flavour without making it taste too dairy.
The chickpeas in this soup adds more to the texture rather than the flavour of the soup, providing more strength.
Adding the parsley provides a fresh, herb note and produces the attractive pistachio green colour of the finished soup.


  1. I get up at 4am and read my rss feed reader blogs. At least I am not trying to fend for my space in bed with 2 large dogs and one snoring husband! ;). I hit 7am running and my day is started off full of possibilities and with all different kinds of prospects and processes running through my mind. I no longer have trouble sleepin ;). Oh of the very few things that I really don't like is celeriac so I doubt that I will be trying this or your next recipe any day soon but they look delicious and if someone was inclined to eat this intense condensed form of celery, I am sure that they would love them :)

  2. Oh dear for me too, I was always destined to arrive at a flavour you didn't enjoy, I'm a little sad though because I was pleased to be writing up a recipe that didn't use eggs. At least the pakora recipe can very easily be made using carrots, green beans, peppers or butternut squash with no other alteration so do try them out. The odd thing is, as a flavour, I am not over fond of celery, I use it of course a lot along with onion and garlic in sauces and risotto; but find the celeriac in both these recipes has a milder flavour than celery. For me parsnip is a vegetable I would never seek out, I think the sweetness doesn't work for me, I have friends though who adore roast parsnips and tell me I don't know what I'm missing. You will be saddened to hear I am working on two more recipes that use celeriac, you will need to blame it all on Sylvia who brought me four of them. When these four are out of the way, I promise no more celeriac for a long time, best wishes, Tôbi