When simmered with spices, pressed through a mill, and then whipped with seasoned stock, the gnarled beastie arracacha turns soufflé-soft. Suave, spoonable, light-bodied, the yellow puree can take the place of winter squash dishes—although it is quite different.
Maricel Presilla, who kindly loaned this recipe from her forthcoming book about the foods of Latin America, lightly underscores the vegetable’s mysterious savor with sweet spices. She likes it best with venison and sauce, but she allows that any roast with gravy or natural juices would do nicely. Tiny fragrant Caribbean peppers, ajíes dulces, are usually found in the same markets as apio. If they are not available, green peppers make a surprisingly effective substitute. The dish is lightest when freshly made, but it can be heated in a microwave.