Tuesday, June 21, 2011

ugly veg!

i am getting quite excited.

i'm growing ugly veg this year ..... even have seeds on order for a tomato named Mr. Ugly.  how cool is that!  i reckon there is something intrinsically beautiful about ugly veg.  oxymoron maybe .... but you have to believe, that in spite of the ugliness of what it looks like on the outside ... on the inside it just has to be full of all sorts of great yumminess!

so i have Mr Ugly tomato's on order, and am currently growing celeriac and kohlrabi.  my kohlrabi haven't sprouted yet, but i have celeriac that are in varying states of readiness and i expect will be ready to go out into the garden in the next few weeks.  here is what the most developed ones look like at the moment.

i am expecting that after a bit of tlc and being planted out in our new, u-beaut veggie patch, that this is what they will eventually look like.

U - G - L - Y!!!!

these things are supposed to be very diverse in how they are used.  if you dice it up raw or grate it .... you can use it like celery.  on the other side .... if you roast it or boil it .... you can use it like potato.  it would appear to be another very versatile veg to be used in a plethora of ways.

and here are a couple of recipes .... they are winter oriented, simply because it feels like winter outside!  however, i have also seen recipes for grated celeriac and fennel salads and a variety of other  more spring time / summery recipes.

Here is a recipe from Hugh @ River Cottage that i intend to try this winter.  i'll let you know how it goes!


1 large celeriac, peeled
2-3 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
1/2 - 1 large red chili, de-seeded and finely sliced
salt and black pepper to taste
3 tbsp rapeseed oil
150 ml whole milk
350 ml double cream

  1. preheat oven to 190C.  using a mandolin, food processor or knife, slice the celeriac to the thickness of a 10p coin.  place the  celeriac, garlic, chili, salt and plenty of black pepper in a large bowl and toss to coat.  add enough oil to coat and toss again.  
  2. in a jug, mix the milk and cream together, add 3/4 to the bowl and give everything a good mix to coat.  butter a gratin dish and pour in half the creamy celeriac mix.  arrange the celeriac evenly then add the rest of the celeriac and arrange in the dish and top up with the remaining cream.
  3. bake for 45 minutes, or until brown on top and bubbling.

and another for Celeriac, Potato and Leek Soup, again from River Cottage.


50g Butter
1 Celeriac, peeled and cubed
1 Potato, peeled and cubed
1 Leek, trimmed, washed and roughly sliced
1 Onion, peeled and roughly chopped
1 Garlic clove, sliced
1 litre stock (veg, chicken ... whatever suits you!)
Parsley and Walnut pesto to serve


Melt the butter in a large, heavy-based pot over a medium-low heat.  Add the celeriac, leek, potato, garlic and onion, season generously, and gently sweat the vegetables until they're all starting to soften (should take about 10 minutes).

Add the stock, bring the soup to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until the celeriac is completely tender.  Liquidise until smooth, return to the pan and reheat over a medium flame.  just before serving,m check the soup for seasoning and serve with a drizzle of pesto.


  1. I am just going to have to get the River Cottage dvds , maggie!
    I have never tried celeriac ... , you will have to post about it when it grows. sounds interesting

  2. Kim i love everything river cottage! he is such a funky electic guy! and love his commitment to growing and eating local and seasonal!

  3. A recipe to store for the cold days of Winter. It sounds fab.

  4. I haven't really got into celeriac, but just might give it a go now you've told me how to use them. About the canning, yes I do use recycled jars but I buy new lids from green living especially if I'm going to gift them or sell them.