Mandrake Brain Soup (aka Celeriac & Apple Soup)

I should just re-title my blog “Allison’s Mom’s Recipes,” because most of the recipes I’ve made in the past two weeks have originated from my mother.

Mama C sent me a recipe for celeriac and apple soup via Epicurious last week. When I opened the email I was all “what the what is celeriac?”

This is celeriac:

It turns out, celeriac is another name for celery root.

They remind me of those Mandrakes from Harry Potter…you know…these things:

Anyway. I made some soup with the celeriac and some of the remaining apples from our trip to VT.

I thought I’d name it Mandrake Brain Soup in honor of Halloween…because it’s a creepy name…

Mandrake Brain Soup (adapted from Epicurious)


1 celery root (about 1 lb)

3 small apples (I used red ones–either macoun, mac or empire. I can’t tell them apart…)

1 large yellow onion

4 cups organic, free range chicken broth (low sodium)

1/4 cup butter



Pretty basic ingredients.

I was excited to find organic, free-range chicken broth! I didn’t know it existed until the Health Food Store Tour two weeks ago.

The star of the show: Mr. Celeriac.

His background dancers: the Applettes. (I know, I’m a nerd…)

Step One: peel the celery root, apples and onion and chop into uniform chunks. My chunks were 1″ cubes.

After I finished chopping, I had a pretty good idea what color the soup would be…

Step two: melt the butter in a large pot, then add all of the soup cubes.

Cook over medium heat until the onions are translucent–about 15 minutes.

Step Three: add the chicken broth,

reduce the heat and allow the soup to simmer until the celery root and the apple chunks are soft, about 25-30 minutes.

While your soup is simmering, pre-heat the oven to 350 and prepare to bake your bacon.

Place the desired amount of bacon on a foil-lined baking sheet. I made six pieces, but you could easily make more…

Bake for 20-30 minutes. I like my bacon chewy, yet crispy, so I tend to leave it in for 25 minutes.

Once the celeriac and apple chunks are soft, allow the soup to cool for a few minutes, and then transfer into your food processor. Process until you like how it looks. I like my soup to be thick, but without chunks…

Spoon the soup into bowls and top with bacon and chives.

mmmMMMMMmmmm. Yum. The soup was good. I wish I had more bacon to go with it though…the bacon and the chives are a must for added flavor.

I love a hot bowl of soup for dinner on a chilly fall night! Although this soup was thick in consistency, it was pretty light in taste. Hints of apple, celery and onion.  Mandrake Brains are delicious–I ate a heaping bowl full and was totally satisfied.

What’s your favorite kind of soup?


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