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  • Seasonal local food recipe No.296 – Delia’s braised celery with cheese and onion sauce

    Posted on October 3rd, 2015 Janet No comments

    This dish is from Delia Smith’s first Complete Cookery Course.  It can be a bit time consuming to make but I think it is worth the trouble.

    Serves 2-3celery

    Preparation time: 15 minutes
    Cooking time: 1 hour 15 minutes

    Ingredients
    1 large or 2 small heads of celery
    25 g butter
    1 Tbs olive or rapeseed oil
    1 carrot, thinly sliced
    1 onion, thinly sliced
    150 ml chicken stock
    1/4 tsp celery seeds (optional)
    salt and freshly ground black pepper

    For the sauce:
    Milk
    25 g butter
    1 small onion, finely chopped
    15 g flour
    75 g cheddar cheese, grated
    1 egg, beaten

    Method
    Clean the celery with a bristle brush, trim off the leaf and base of each stalk and cut in half.  Blanch the celery by putting it in boiling salted water for about 5 minutes, then drain well. 
    In a flameproof casserole, heat the butter and oil, add the carrot and onion and cook gently for about 5 minutes.  Add the drained celery and the chicken stock.  Sprinkle with the celery seeds if using and season with a little salt and pepper. 
    Place the casserole in a preheated oven 180°C/Gas Mark 4 and bake, covered, for 30 minutes or until the celery is tender. 
    Drain the cooking liquid into a measuring jug and make it up to 275 ml with milk. To make the sauce, heat the butter in a saucepan and fry the finely chopped onion until golden, then blend in the flour and cook for a couple of minutes before adding the milk mixture a little at a time, stirring well after each addition.  Bring to simmering point, still stirring, and simmer gently for a minute or two, then remove from the heat and beat in the cheese and beaten egg. 
    Pour the sauce over the vegetables in the casserole dish and bake in the oven for a further 20 minutes until it is baking hot.  Serve with rice.

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