Not So Ancient History
Let's Hear It For The Boys

Celeriac, Onion and Potato Casserole

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 The Weatherman was reading the newsletter that comes from our co-op farm membership, and he came across this recipe. "This sounds good," he said. "Do you think we should make it?" I gave it a quick once-over and said, "We Kemo Sabe?" And the Weatherman said, "I'll try it." And he did! And it was good! Perfect for a cold, winter's day.

3 medium potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 large celeriac (also known as "celery root") peeled, cut into quarters and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 medium onion, quartered and sliced
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 15 ounce can whole tomatoes, chopped, juices reserved
1 cup dry white wine or vegetable broth
1 teaspoon dried basil
salt and pepper to taste

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then add potatoes and cook until just tender, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove potatoes to a bowl, then add celery root to boiling water and cook until tender, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove celery root and add to bowl with potatoes. Reserve cooking liquid.

In a medium skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, celery and basil and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add wine or broth, increse heat and cook to reduce liquid until about half, about 5 to 7 minutes.  Add tomatoes and their juices plus 1/2 cup reserved cooking liquid.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a two quart baking dish. Ladle half of the tomato mixture in bottom of prepared pan. Make a layer of alternating potato and celery root slices, season with pepper.Top with some of tomato mixture. Then repeat, using remaining potato and celery root slices. Cover with remaining tomato mixture.

Cover and bake until potatoes and celery root are tender, about 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes. Serve warm.



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