Celery root schnitzel – a couple of years ago I would have run from this dish. It was one of the very few vegetarian options at our university cafeteria and I dreaded both the cafeteria and their deep fried mushy vegetable mess.

After a very long abstinence I decided to give the celery root schnitzel another chance. And this time I liked it so much that we had it twice in one week. We made a couple of changes to this classic vegetarian dish (in Germany) by using a couple of hazelnuts for the breading. We also served it with a macadamia rosemary cream instead of the remoulade that usually goes with this. And since I suck at breading and frying, we baked the celery root. That way the breading had a chance to stay where it was and not end up in a pan or deep fryer, leaving me with a naked vegetable.

Macadamia Rosemary Cream:

100 g (3/4 cup) roasted and salted macadamia nuts
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced
120 ml (1/2 cup) water
1 teaspoon lime or lemon juice
2 green kalamata olives
salt and pepper to taste

Place all ingerdients in a blender. Purée until smooth.

Celery Root Schnitzel (serves 2):

500 g (1 lb 2 oz) celery root, cut into 1.2 cm ( 0.5 inch) thick pieces and peeled.


80 g (2/3 cup) bread crumbs
50 g (2/3 cup) ground hazelnuts
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt

80 ml (1/3 cup) water
1 tablespoon cornstarch

Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and brush with oil.

Steam the celery root slices for about 7 minutes. They should be soft but not mushy.

Mix all the breading ingredients and place in a soup plate. In a second soup plate, combine water and starch. Stir until the starch is dissolved.

Dip the celery slices in the water mixture and coat with breading. Place on the baking sheet and spray with oil.

Bake for 20 minutes, carefully top with macardamia cream.

Yes, it’s time for another bread post. From time to time I read a blog by a German baker. He does not only bake and sell bread, he also shares some of his recipes with his readers. Those recipes are wonderful and he usually adds very helpful instructions and tips. Some weeks ago he published a recipe for a 100% rye sourdough bread. The best thing about this bread is that it contains no flour. It made from 100% cracked rye (rye chops, rye groats,  rye meal, or whatever you call the stuff in English). You know, this is my favourite kind of bread. It is similar to German pumpernickel, just not as sweet. It is so awesome because it has an amazingly rich flavour, lots of nutrients, is dense, chewy, and moist, and it keeps so well, that you could probably send it to your aunt in Australia by ship without doing any harm to it. I made two versions of this bread. First I followed the original recipe to the t. I liked the result and wanted to make a second bread. When I opened my flour cupboard in the evening to prepare the starter, there was no rye left. Of course. So I used spelt instead and I was very please with the result.

So I made a second loaf  with freshly milled spelt groats and a couple of sunflower seeds.

This one came out even better than the first. It’s like the organic bread from my all time favourite bakery at my parents’ place. It’s some seriously good stuff.

Bäcker Süpke’s bread made with spelt

Just like with any good bread, you need some time and patience to make this. And you should make this. You need to prepare the starter 20 hours before you start baking.

To make the starter: 150 g spelt groats 150 g water 1 tablespoon ripe sourdough starter (the stuff you keep in the fridge, also called “mother dough” or “mother starter”) Put all ingredients in a bowl, stir until combined, cover with a plate or plastic and let ferment in a warm place for 20 hours. This bread is not only made with a sourdough starter, it does as well contain a “Brühstück” (scald soak). For such a Brühstück grains and/or seeds are mixed with an equal amount of hot water. The soaked and softened grains add even more moisture to the bread. In this case the Brühstück is made from: 150 g spelt groats 150 g hot water Pour hot water over groats and let sit for 3 hours. After you’ve prepared your starter and have the Brühstück ready, you can start to make your bread. Whole Grain Spelt Bread with Sunflower Seeds (slightly adapted from this recipe) 300 g prepared starter 300 g Brühstück 150 g spelt groats 50 g sunflower seeds 125 g water 25 g sugar beet syrup or molasses (not blackstrap!) 10 g salt Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Knead until everything is well combined. The dough will not be like regular bread dough, but more like freshly prepared polenta or stiff oatmeal:

Let the dough rest for 30 minutes, so that the grains and seeds can absorb the water. Transfer to a bread pan (lined with parchment paper or grease well). Cover with plastic and sprinkle with spelt groats. Let rise for 2 hours. The bread probably won’t rise as much as bread made from hite flour. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 250°C (480°F). Bake the bread for then minutes, reduce heat to 180°C (350°F) and bake for another 50-60 minutes. Remove from oven and let the bread rest for 24 hours before slicing. Top with your favourite vegan cheese or sausage, eggless egg salad, chickpea salad, Tartex or sunflower seed spread, etc.

Guten Appetit! By the way, would anybody be interested in a blog post about how to make your own sourdough starter?

This entry was submitted to Susan’s YeastSpotting.