News, Culture & Society

Root vegetable salsify makes a comeback after Waitrose announces plan to sell it in 100 shops 

Salsify is a root vegetable – belonging to the dandelion family – that was a staple of the Victorian diet, and is generally available between October and January. 

Like many root vegetables you can boil them, mash them, or use them in a stew.

A higher quality specimen will be firm and smooth, preferably with the green tops still attached.

Celebrity chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall offers recipes for salsify fritters, salsify tempura with spicy dipping sauce and salsify gratin.

In a clip from his TV series The F Word, Gordon Ramsay outlines how to make crushed celeriac and roasted salsify.

He says: ‘Salsify tastes like a cross between artichoke and turnip. Don’t overcook it, is it adds great texture to the dish.’ 

Gordon Ramsay Restaurants offers a recipe for roasted lamb with charred calcot onions, artichokes and salsify purée.

Pictured: Salsify in blankets, a vegetable twist on the classic pigs in blankets

How to make Salsify in Blankets 

Source: Great British Chefs


  • Three batons of salsify
  • One juiced lemon
  • 30g of butter
  • Five rashers of smoked streaky bacon, cut in half
  • Salt 

Step one: Put the lemon juice into a bowl of water. Peel the salsify, slicing each baton into three pieces. Immediately place it in the lemon water to prevent discolouring.

Step two: Heat the butter in a pan and add the salsify, cooking it in the foaming butter with a pinch of salt for five minutes, or until al dente.

Baste and turn the salsify for an even gold colour. Remove and allow it to cool. 

Step three: Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.

Step four: Once the salsify is cool enough to handle, wrap each baton in half a rasher of streaky bacon and place on a baking tray. 

Oven cook the salsify in blankets for 10–15 minutes or until the bacon is crispy, and serve.