Exploring the softer side of celery

Most of us experience celery as a garnish to wings or a Bloody Mary, or perhaps as an afternoon snack loaded with peanut butter or squeeze cheese. But this fibrous vegetable offers a lot more than crunch (and strings in your teeth), explains Michael Harlan Turkell. He provides ideas for showcasing the rich and earthy flavors that cooked celery offers.

When you combine celery with aromatics like onions and garlic, it forms the base of mirepoix and sofrito, explains Turkell. Celery’s “snappy, vibrant green fades to a dull pastel, and its bitter, salty bite mellows, becoming sweeter and earthier,” he says. Turkell’s synopsis of celery’s long culinary history reminded me of an article that dove deep into the history of this marshland-loving vegetable, which EYB shared in 2017.

It isn’t only the stalks that garner attention from chefs and home cooks alike. Celery leaves can be treated like an herb, chopped and used in a variety of soups, stews, and other dishes. My family’s potato and dumpling soup recipe (we like carbs!) utilizes both the celery stalks (making a pseudo-mirepoix with onions), and the leaves as an aromatic cooking herb. If you are intrigued by the idea of exploring cooked celery but aren’t sure where to start, the EYB Library has 29 online recipes for braised celery, one of the more traditional ways to showcase this underrated vegetable.

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  • sayeater  on  June 16, 2022

    And now I want squeeze cheese.

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