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Celery in scarlet sauce

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Celery in Scarlet Sauce


This cheers the eye as well as the palate, very good hot it is exceptional cold and is a really useful dish for the winter months. Celery can sometimes be quite bland but the combination of apple, caraway, tomato and paprika brings out the best of its flavour and gives it a bit of a kick, so serve this with creamy mashed potatoes, plain grilled fish or pork or with an earthy bean dish.

Serves 4                                                                                                               Time taken 30 minutes

Celery in scarlet sauce25 g butter
1 medium cooking apple
1 teaspoon caraway seeds, ground
1 heaped teaspoon paprika + ½teaspoon smoked paprika
salt and ground black pepper
3 tablespoon passata or 1 tablespoon tomato purée + 1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon olive oil
6 or 7 big sticks of celery

Melt the butter in a small pan. Peel, core and finely chop the apple and put into the pan, stir to coat with the butter and start cooking gently. Grind the caraway seeds and add to the apple with the paprikas. Continue to cook gently until the apple is soft and can be mashed with a wooden spoon. Add a little salt and pepper and then the passata or tomato purée. Stir well to incorporate it evenly. The sauce should be thick but you may need to add a little water if it is so stiff it isn’t even a sauce.
Chop the celery into 2cm chunks, stringing it if necessary. Gently heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan and adds the celery pieces. Cover the pan and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until the celery is just tender. Then pour the sauce over the celery, turning the celery over so that it is well coated. Warm through if you are serving it hot or leave to cool.