Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Celeriac with Quince in Orange and Lemon Juice

 If someone asked you which items are in season right now, the chances are you would say celeriac, quinces and oranges. Or of course you could say carrots, leeks, and turnips!

seasonal veg from the market
But this is the season par excellence for celeriac or kereviz. I love it, that strange knobbly root vegetable that has the smell of celery but is so very different. I had never seen it before I came to Turkey.  At this time of year most Turkish households will have zeytinyağlı kereviz in the fridge but here is a new recipe for a different take on an old favourite and it comes via my friend Oya.

I love quince and think it is highly undervalued here as the primary use seems to be for ayva tatlısı /quince dessert ie baked in the oven and served with  kaymak or buffalo cream. I love it, yes, but it is so much more versatile than that. Awkward  to peel but so easy to cook with an aroma that will fill your house with delight.

the finished dish of celeriac cooked with quince in orange and lemon juice

This recipe combines celeriac and quince which are then  gently cooked in orange juice and lemon. Both tastes and textures complement each other and the beautiful green of the chopped dill to garnish the dish makes this celeriac dish the perfect zeytinyağlı to round off a meal.

it's cooked in the juice of 2 oranges like this

Ingredients for Celeriac with Quince and Orange/Ayva ve Portakallı Zeytinyağlı Kereviz

Serves 6 – 8

celeriac with quince

2 large celeriac/kereviz (850 g)

2 carrots

1 large quince/ayva (pron: eye/vah)

2 onions, chopped

½ cup olive oil

Juice of 2 – 3 oranges

1 dessert spoon sugar

1 tsp salt

Juice of 1 lemon + ½ a lemon to make the acidulated water

2-3 cloves garlic, chopped

Parsley or dill, to garnish


·         Peel the celeriac and slice. Put into a bowl of acidulated water (water with the juice of ½ lemon). This is to keep the celeriac from discolouring.

halve the slices if too large

·         Halve and then quarter the quince. Peel and remove core. Cut into rough chunks and add to the acidulated water.

chopping the quince and carrots

·         Peel the carrots and cut into batons.

·         Chop the onions, place in the pan with the olive oil, sugar and salt. Cook till soft and transparent. Add the carrots and garlic and mix gently.

like this ...

·         Add the quince and celeriac, then the orange juice and lemon juice. Cover with the lid and bring to a fast boil. Then lower the heat and cook gently for 40 mins. When the carrots are done, the dish is ready. Leave to cool in the pan.

adding the juice to the pan

·         Arrange in a shallow dish and garnish with either chopped parsley or dill. Serve at room temperature.

close-up of the finished dish

afiyet olsun!

 If you like celeriac, have a look at these: