When working with celery root, choose firm, heavy bulbs. Peel off the brown outer skin and always have at the ready a bowl of acidulated water—spiked with a couple of tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar—to prevent cut surfaces from darkening (this goes for the apples, as well). The rest is a matter of slicing or grating everything to a slim, uniform size and whisking up the dressing. One refreshing bite and it’s spring, no matter what the groundhog says.
Celery Root & Apple Slaw
1 Tablespoon fennel seeds, lightly toasted
1 Tablespoon pink peppercorns
3/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt, or to taste
3 Tablespoons prepared horseradish
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon orange zest
3 Tablespoons orange juice
2 teaspoons honey
3 Tablespoons mayonnaise (or substitute sour cream or Greek yogurt)
3 cups grated or julienned celery root (from 1 large bulb), in acidulated water
3 cups grated or julienned apple, skin on (Fuji or Pink Lady are good), in acidulated water
In a spice grinder or mortar and pestle, coarsely grind together fennel seeds, peppercorns and salt.
In a small bowl, whisk together horseradish, zests, orange juice, honey and mayonnaise. Stir in ground spices.
Drain celery root and apple, and blot with paper towels. Place in a large bowl and add dressing. Mix well to thoroughly coat. Serve immediately, or chill for an hour.