Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Legumes Oubliés

Do you know what vegetable this is? Neither did I, but luckily there was sign in my market telling me. Later in the week I saw it again packaged with a picture of two jolly men, the growers. This vegetable loves sandy soil and grows well in Brittany and Loire.

It's chervil root.
Suddenly heirloom vegetables are everywhere in Paris. I like the English term better legumes oubliés implies that you knew what they were and have simply forgotten, which is rarely the case. Ten years ago it was difficult to find a parsnip in Paris, now they are everywhere, although I find myself having to explain how to cook them to other shoppers in my local market. Carrots are finally appearing in multi-colours a roots revival is taking place in markets and on  menus.
The French have always loved beetroot buying it already cooked in the market, but now raw beetroot is being promoted but they are mostly red. It is hard to find the golden or candy cane beetroots that are so popular in Toronto's organic markets.
If you see chervil root don't hesitate to try it. Like celeriac (celery root) you can eat it raw or cooked. It is sweet and starchy. Pureed (add lots of cream and butter) it is a good match with game.


Fiona said...

I shall keep my eyes open for this one - thank you Jennifer and have a great Christmas!

Mal's Allotment said...

Curious that some books say that garden chervil roots are piosonous!

I'm on for these. Just need to source some seed!

Jennifer said...

The root of regular chervil may be poisonous. According to Oxford Food Companion - turnip rooted chervil chaerophyllum bulbosum is grown just for the root and its leaves are slightly poisonous.

Post a Comment