Surprisingly tasty!! No noodles here–slices of celeriac take the place of noodles. For a more substantial dish, use a meat-based tomato sauce. Bread and a salad are good accompaniments.
3 lbs (approx.) celeriac
2 T lemon juice
2 T sea salt
2 c tomato sauce
3/4 c heavy cream or half-and-half
butter for greasing baking dish
1 c grated Parmesan cheese
1. Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Meanwhile, peel the celeriac, using your preferred method. Cut peeled celeriac into quarters. Cut each quarter into thin slices. When the water has reached the boil, add the lemon juice and salt. Then add the celeriac slices, stirring to prevent them from sticking together. Cook until tender but firm, al dente, as it were; you don’t want them to be falling apart. This will take anywhere from 7 to 12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the slices. Drain thoroughly, carefully pressing out excess water. Cool enough to handle.
2. Combine the tomato sauce and cream in a saucepan and warm over low heat. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Arrange a baking rack in the center of the oven. Butter a 2 quart baking dish.
3. Layer 1/3 of the drained, cooled celeriac slices on the bottom of the baking dish. Top with 1/3 of the tomato sauce and 1/3 of the cheese. Repeat two more times until all the celeriac slices, tomato sauce and cheese have been used. (The dish can be prepared to this point several hours in advance. Bring to room temperature before baking).
4. Place in the center of the preheated oven and bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 40 minutes. Serve immediately, cut into thick wedges.