When summer fades and the markets fill with fall fruits and roots, make this savory-sweet purée of pears and celery root, a perfect accompaniment to roast pork tenderloin or to pork of any kind.
Serves 8 as a side dish
1 large celery root, 11/2 lb/680 g, trimmed, peeled, and cut into 1-in/2.5-cm cubes
11/2 tsp kosher or fine sea salt
4 Anjou pears, about 2 lb/910 g
1/4 cup/55 g unsalted butter
1/2 cup/60 ml dry vermouth
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup/120 ml heavy whipping cream, warmed
Freshly ground white pepper
Fill a 6-qt/5.7 L saucepan two-thirds full of water. Add the celery root and 1 tsp of the salt, cover partially, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat so the water simmers and cook until the celery root is tender when pierced with a knife, about 15 minutes. Drain the celery root in a colander and return it to the pan. Place the pan over low heat for 1 minute to evaporate any excess moisture.
Meanwhile, using a vegetable peeler, peel, halve, and core the pears and cut them into 1-in/2.5-cm chunks. In a large frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the pears and the remaining 1/2 tsp of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pears are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the vermouth and nutmeg and continue cooking until the pears are very soft and the sauce thickens, about 5 minutes more. Remove the pan from the heat.
In a food processor, combine half the celery root, half the pears, and half the cream and process until completely smooth. Transfer the purée to a warmed serving bowl. Repeat with the remaining celery root, pears, and cream and add to the bowl.
Season the purée with salt and white pepper. Serve immediately, or keep warm in the top of a double boiler or cover and rewarm in a microwave oven.