If you always walk by celery root in the grocery, unsure of what to do with it, do THIS. First, the method of salt-baking feels elevated but is super easy—anyone can do it. The presentation of cracking open the salt crust is fun and interactive. When it’s finished, the celery root slices beautifully and has a tender but firm texture. The addition of the sauce adds the perfect amount of salinity and umami to each bite of celery root. Bookmark this recipe for the sauce, because you can use it on roasted veggies or meat dishes, too!
a heavy-duty stand mixer
a heavy-duty stand mixer
6 large egg whites
4 cups kosher salt
2 whole celery roots, rinsed
3 tablespoons capers, roughly chopped
3 anchovy filets, minced
2 tablespoons homemade or store-bought preserved lemon, chopped
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whisk the egg whites on medium-high for 5 to 8 minutes, until stiff peaks form. Add the salt to the bowl and fold the salt into the egg whites until it is well incorporated.
With your hands, form the salt mixture around the bottom of the celery root. Once the bottom is covered, place it on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper. Build the salt mixture up the sides to completely cover the celery root. Repeat with the second celery root. Bake in the oven for 2 1/2 hours.
Pull the celery roots from the oven and allow them to rest for 20 minutes. The outside of the crust should be hardened.
Meanwhile, make the sauce. In a medium bowl, combine the capers, anchovies, and preserved lemon. Melt the butter in a small pot over medium heat, stirring the butter frequently. The milk solids and fat will begin to separate. As it cooks, the butter will begin to turn brown and smell like toasted hazelnuts. When the butter is brown, immediately remove the pot from the heat and pour the hot brown butter directly over the chopped caper mixture. Mix well.
To serve, crack the hard outer shell from the celery roots and discard. With a knife, cut the skin away, then slice the celery roots. Spoon the warm sauce over the sliced celery root and garnish with leaves of parsley.
A Southern chef with a scientific mind, Katie Button worked for some of the world's best chefs before opening her own restaurants to rave reviews. Receiving four James Beard nominations and many editorial features, she now inspires the at-home chef with her first cookbook of authentic Spanish recipes.