There is something about root vegetables and cold weather….they just seem to go together. The other day it was bone chilling cold; the thermometer did not budge above 9 degrees…Root vegetables to the rescue! Since the D-Man is becoming quite adventurous with the vegetables he’ll eat, I decided a root vegetable gratin would be a nice side dish for our dinner.
We have all heard about the health benefits of Sweet Potatoes, but Celery Root? This ugly duckling of the root family (also referred to as Celeriac) is an excellent source of riboflavin, calcium, Vitamin B6, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, Vitamins A, C, and K, as well as a very healthy dose of dietary fiber. Celery root was originally grown in Northern Europe and the Mediterranean where it is still a popular ingredient, but it is probably the most ignored root vegetable in North America. This nutrient dense low calorie, high fiber, low starch root is versatile so try adding it to your diet.
2 Cups Heavy Cream, divided (full fat coconut milk can be substituted)
1 pound Organic Sweet Potatoes (approximately 2), peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
½ Pound Celery Root, peeled and sliced 1/8 inch thick
½ – ¾ Cup Shredded Raw Sharp Cheddar, Gruyère or Fontina Cheese
½ Cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese
Celtic Sea Salt (to taste)
Freshly Ground Pepper (to taste)
½ teaspoon Organic Ground Ginger
2 + teaspoons Organic Ground Sage
2 + teaspoons Organic Onion Powder
(Optional) ¼ teaspoon of Cayenne Pepper or ½ teaspoon Smoked Paprika
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Pour 1 cup cream into a large buttered casserole.
Arrange layers of peeled/sliced sweet potatoes and celery root evenly into the casserole.
Season with sea salt and pepper, ginger, sage, onion and optional spices as you layer.
Pour the remaining cream on top.
Gently press down with the back of a spoon to submerge the potato/celery root.
Top with shredded cheeses.
Cover the casserole with a lid and place in the oven to bake.
Bake approximately 40 minutes (or until potatoes and celery are cooked).
Let cool 10 minutes before serving.
Note: If you are casein sensitive you can skip the cheese, the casserole is still yummy without it.