Current Moon Phase

Waxing Crescent
24% of full

Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Surprising Uses For Celery

Surprising Uses For Celery

It’s so common we almost don’t notice it in the produce aisle, or if we do, it’s probably to chop up into a plain tuna salad, toss into chicken soup, dice with breadcrumbs for a holiday stuffing, or use to cradle a swath of creamy peanut butter. If you live in Louisiana, you might use celery along with onions and bell peppers to prepare the famed “holy trinity,” and some relish it with carrots and onions for a French mirepoix — found in soups and sauces. But for most of us, lowly celery seems to play a supporting role at best in our cultural cuisine.

The fact is celery has recognized anti-inflammatory properties, antioxidants, flavanoids, vitamins A, K and C. It comes alive when combined with stock and seasonings and braised, marinated, grilled, as soup practically on its own (just add cream!), in pesto and so much more. Love potatoes? Mashed or pureed celery root is a tasty low calorie, low carb substitute that just may surprise you. What’s more, the leaves we all tend to throw away are also flavorful (some say much more than the stalk) and can enhance almost any soup or stew — and are sometimes used as a dried herb.

Prior to the 19th century, celery was grown for use in winter and early spring, regarded as a cleansing tonic to counter the “salt sickness” of a winter diet fraught with preserved fish and meats. Its seeds (actually tiny fruits), while used as a seasoning, also produce an oil germane to the pharmaceutical and perfume industries. In 30 A.D., Roman encyclopaedist Aulus Cornelius Celsus noted celery seed used in pills for pain relief, and the seeds also contain a compound known in the lab to help lower blood pressure in rats.

In contemporary England, one might find a pint of Guinness garnished with a celery stalk, known as the Chelsea Cocktail, just as Americans use it to flag a Bloody Mary. But in a more starring role, celery can be upgraded and decorated to complement almost any savory dish — even standing on its own with a little cream and Sherry to make a rib-sticking cold weather soup.

Try these recipes that elevate celery to a leading culinary role!

Braised Celery
8 celery stalks, rinsed and trimmed, leaves chopped and reserved
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Pinch kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup good quality beef stock or broth

Peel any of the fibrous outer stalks of celery with a vegetable peeler and slice into 1-inch pieces on the bias.  Heat butter in a 10-inch sauté pan over medium heat. Once melted, add celery, salt, and pepper and cook for 5 minutes until just beginning to soften slightly. Add beef broth and stir to combine. Cover and reduce heat to low. Cook until celery is tender but not mushy, approximately 5 minutes. Uncover and allow celery to continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the liquid has been reduced to a glaze. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with reserved leaves.

Pages: 1 2


1 Linda Redmond Morris. { 05.20.15 at 10:37 am }

Sounds wonderful! I will be trying this recipe today…Thank you .

2 Jeanette Clark { 11.12.14 at 9:09 am }

My two children grew up eating celery ‘stuffed’ with peanut butter (carrots the same way)..the main thing was to remove the larger ‘strings’ on the outside when they were real young. We still love both the celery and carrots that way…just like most people do cheese in the center. It may sound weird but is a really healthy snack and a good way to get the kiddos to eat veggies.

3 david evans { 10.07.14 at 10:33 pm }

i love it with just a lil salt

4 CECILIA { 10.07.14 at 9:12 pm }


5 Armando Hernandez { 10.07.14 at 12:46 pm }

I cook celery in many ways all the time,I will try this recipe too.

6 dongirndt { 05.27.14 at 5:37 pm }

interesting,,I’ll have to try out the recipes,..

Leave a Comment

Note: Comments that further the discussion of the above content are likely to be approved. Those comments that are vague or are simply submitted in order to promote a product, service or web site, although not necessarily considered "spam," are generally not approved.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1910, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.