Celery raw develops the jaw, but celery stewed is more quietly chewed. ~Ogden Nash
For some reason, celery is an undervalued vegetable, so low in calories that it’s the dinner of choice for anorexics everywhere. But in fact, celery is chock-full of many vitamins and minerals including Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Folate, Vitamin K, and Niacin (or Vitamin B3). The celery that comes in my CSA basket is nothing like its anemic, floppy counterpart that one can purchase in the supermarket. It is deep green, and assertive, both in posture and flavor.
Besides smearing it with peanut butter and a sprinkling of raisins, I’ve been using in in my green juice and the other day decided to try it braised. Julia Child was a big fan…and now so am I. Braising mellows this stalky vegetable and brings out a rich, savory flavor. The cooking broth reduces to a shiny glaze and while the celery tenderly yields to the tines of the fork, it still has a bit of crunch left (nobody wants to eat mush). Serve it alongside a roast this holiday season for a truly lovely and simple dish.
- 8 stalks of celery, scrubbed and ends trimmed (chop and reserve leaves)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup of vegetable stock
- Cut celery into 1-inch slices on the diagonal.
- Heat butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add celery, along with salt and pepper and cook until it starts to become tender.
- Add broth, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Uncover and cook for 5 minutes longer, allowing the broth to reduce caramelize a bit.
- Taste for seasoning and serve immediately, garnished with reserved chopped leaves.