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Chilled Celery Root Soup for Summer

June 09, 1988|JEANNE JONES | Jones is a food consultant and a cookbook author.

I love to make creamy cold soups that fool my guests into thinking they are being sinfully indulgent and then surprise them by revealing it's my latest spa recipe. My newest cold soup creation is chilled cream of celery root soup.

Actually, this soup is made from the root of the celeriac plant. Celeriac root is almost always sold as "celery root." Celeriac root is far superior in both flavor and texture to real celery root, which is stringy. It is good diced or grated in cold salads and it makes a delicious, delicate soup when pureed.

This soup is wonderful to take on picnics. Pour it in a chilled vacuum bottle and serve in mugs with tuna or chicken sandwiches. For dinner parties I serve it as a first course in icers or chilled soup bowls and garnish the top with celery leaves or sprigs.

It also makes a fabulous cold sauce for fish, seafood and poultry. When I'm making it for a sauce, I reduce the amount of buttermilk to one cup. Try my soup for a refreshingly different summer meal that is sure to delight your family and friends.

CHILLED CREAM OF CELERY ROOT SOUP

2 small or 1 very large celery root (2 pounds)

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1/2 teaspoon salt

Dash white pepper

1/2 cup finely chopped chives or green onion tops

Peel celery root and dice into 1/2-inch cubes. Place in steamer and steam over boiling water 10 minutes, or until tender enough to be easily mashed.

Remove celery root from steamer and reserve 1 cup liquid. Place 1/3 celery root and reserved liquid in blender. Blend until smooth, alternately adding remaining celery root, buttermilk, salt and white pepper. Blend until velvety smooth.

Pour into mixing bowl and add chopped chives. Mix thoroughly. Chill before serving. Serve in icers or chilled soup bowls. Makes 4 cups.

Each 1/2-cup serving contains approximately:

Calories: 47

Cholesterol: 2 milligrams

Fat: 1 gram

Sodium: 254 milligrams

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