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Braised celery and tomatoes

Celery is so often used for salads that it is neglected as a vegetable. This casserole of celery with onion, tomatoes and carrots is especially good with roast lamb.

ingredients

serves 4
Butter and cooking oil for frying
1 medium-sized onion, peeled and chopped
4 tomatoes, skinned, seeded and chopped
2 heads of celery, stalks scrubbed and halved crossways
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
Approx. 600 ml (1 pint) chicken stock
1 bouquet garni
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

method

1. Heat a knob of butter and a spoon of oil in a flameproof casserole. Add the onion and fry until golden. Stir in the tomatoes, celery and carrots.

2. Pour in just enough stock to cover the vegetables, and bring to the boil.

3. Add the bouquet garni, and salt and pepper to taste, and transfer to a warm oven (160°C/325°F or Gas Mark 3).

4. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes or until the celery is just tender when pricked with a fork.

5. Adjust seasoning and discard the bouquet garni, then transfer to a hot serving dish with a little of the cooking liquid. Alternatively, the vegetables can be served straight from the casserole after draining off most of the cooking liquid.

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