Making a celeriac gratin has been on my mind since Monday – there was a distinct chill in the air. I regard such dishes – baked in the oven, and warm, earthy and creamy – as akin to being given a cuddle in food form, which feels necessary right now. I was very glad to share this one with the perennially gorgeous Ayça, who brought along some dry sparkling wine for company.
½ celeriac, peeled and cut into thin slices
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into thin slices
small bunch of tarragon, leaves picked and roughly chopped
300 ml cream
grating of nutmeg (optional)
large heap of grated cheese – I used mostly Gruyère and a bit of mature cheddar
salt and pepper
How I made it:
Pre-heat oven to 200c.
Prepare the vegetables, as indicated.
Heat the cream gently in a pan with ½ of the tarragon, a good grating of nutmeg, and season well. Turn off when almost boiling and leave to infuse.
Meanwhile, rub a ceramic, metal or glass oven dish well with your garlic clove cut in half, then discard garlic.
Layer up potato / celeriac and between each layer in the ceramic dish and place a few blobs of butter, salt and pepper, and a small sprinkling of tarragon and cheese in between each layer. Continue until all celeriac and potato is used. Top with the rest of the cheese, and pour over infused cream. Bake for 50mins -1 hour, until cooked through and brown and bubbling on top. Check by sticking a sharp knife in to make sure all the potato and celeriac is cooked.
A crisp salad and sparkling wine.
If you want to make this more substantial – you could have a poached egg on top, or some white fish with it.