Whole celeriac, whole tarragon chicken & apple

Whole celeriac, whole tarragon chicken & apple

The New Nordic
Simon Bajada

The willingness of new Nordic chefs to explore different techniques for cooking common ingredients is something to admire. I have always eaten celeriac paired with potato in a purée and have considered it, at times, too powerful for my palate. In this recipe, it is roasted whole, which has the effect of softening and sweetening the flavours, while the nuttiness of the brown butter brings an interesting extra depth.


Quantity Ingredient
80g pine nuts
1 x 1.5kg chicken
25g fresh tarragon, leaves picked

White pepper

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon rapeseed oil
400g Light pickling solution, made using 400 g asparagus, woody ends removed, thinly sliced
Rhubarb chutney, to serve

Roasted celeriac

Quantity Ingredient
1 x 600-1 g-kg whole celeriac, peeled
50g Brown butter, cooled
3 dried juniper berries, ground


Quantity Ingredient
150g mache
1 granny smith apple, thinly sliced into acidulated water


Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
100ml olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar


  1. Preheat the oven to 150°C. Toast the pine nuts on a small baking tray for 5–10 minutes, until they are lightly golden. Shake the tray from time to time and don’t let them burn. Transfer the pine nuts to a plate and set aside. Turn up the oven temperature to 180°C.
  2. For the roasted celeriac, place the celeriac on a large sheet of foil and rub all over with the cold brown butter. Sprinkle with the ground juniper berries and some salt. Pierce the celeriac all over using a fork then wrap tightly in the foil, using an extra piece if required. Cook in the oven for 1½ hours, until it is soft all the way through when pierced with a knife. If you have a particularly large celeriac, it may take a little longer.
  3. Once the celeriac is in the oven, prepare the chicken. Using your thumb and a spoon lift the skin from the chicken at the cavity end. Slide in half the tarragon leaves as far as you can then press the skin back down. Put the remaining leaves inside the cavity. Season the chicken with salt and white pepper and rub with the rapeseed oil. Tie the legs together with kitchen string then place in a roasting tray or casserole dish. Cook in the oven for 1 hour–1 hour 20 minutes. Check whether the chicken is cooked by piercing the flesh under the drumstick with a knife; if the juices run clear then it is ready.
  4. Combine the mâche and drained apple in a bowl. Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing and toss with the salad.
  5. Let the celeriac cool a little then use your hands to tear it into rough pieces. Top with the pickled asparagus and pine nuts, and serve alongside the chicken and mâche salad with some rhubarb chutney on the side.
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