Did you know that you can eat spinach roots as well as the leaves? It’s a great vegetable, full of flavour and with an attractive shape.

Spinach roots are finger-thick with tiny hairs. When you deep-fry them, the little hairs turn crispy and the thicker part of the root stays juicy inside. Brilliant!

Spinach is related to beetroot, and the roots have a similar flavour. You can simply deep-fry them raw, sweat them in butter, or cook them sous vide before frying until crisp.

They are a favourite ingredient of many avant-garde chefs, who have recently begun experimenting with them. Several times, I’ve seen chefs pipe a small portion of cream cheese onto a board or slate and then stand the fried root in it so that it resembles a little Christmas tree. This can be served as a starter – a lovely surprise for your guests!

If you’d like to try spinach roots, you can simply pick them from the garden. Alternatively, you can order them from farmer Stefan Brunner, who also supplies them to top chefs. He even delivers by post: www.brunnereichhof.ch

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