Crab Salad with Two Celeries

See the RecipeChristopher Hirsheimer

Bernard Loiseau, of La Cote D'Or fame, included this recipe in his cookbook L'Envolee des Saveurs (which means something like "high-flying flavors"). This is our adaptation.

Crab Salad with Two Celeries
The sweetness of the crab is a lovely counterpoint to the earthy flavors of the celery and hazelnut oil in this light salad.
Yield: serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 small celery root
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • Leaves from 1 bunch celery
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp. hazelnut oil
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups fresh lump crab meat
  • 1 head bibb lettuce, washed and separated into leaves

Instructions

  1. Peel celery root very thoroughly. Cut into uniform batons, about 2" long and ¼" thick. Melt 1 tbsp. of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add batons and cook, covered, over medium-low heat until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
  2. Heat remaining 1 tbsp. butter in a medium saucepan with 1 tbsp. water over medium-high heat. Add celery leaves and cook for 1 minute. Drain on paper towels. Place celery root and leaves in separate bowls.
  3. Pour lemon juice into a small bowl. Whisk in oil and season with salt and pepper to taste. Place crab meat in another bowl, then mix in half the vinaigrette. Divide remaining vinaigrette between celery leaves and celery root and toss gently.
  4. Arrange lettuce on a serving platter and top with celery root. Place crab over the celery root and garnish with the celery leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper.