Celery is in season here in the UK next month.
I've never understood the pale, green sticks.
I do buy it every so often - mostly to use in a chicken soup or soffrito — the cornerstone for many Italian dishes, when finely diced and combined with finely diced onion and carrot. Any remaining stalks wither in my fridge for a fortnight, before their final destination — the compost heap.
Be honest, who really likes it? Would you really choose to crunch on one of those stringy stalks?
The only reason I can see to eat it is (a) if you are dieting, and even then, cucumber wins hands down for me as a low-cal veg of choice; and (b) if it is smothered with something tasty, like blue cheese or hummus.
I really want to like it - as well as being low cal, it also contains a bunch of nutrients: riboflavin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, calcium, magnesium and phosphorus, and it's a good source of dietary fibre as well as vitamins A, C, K, folate, potassium and manganese.
But it tastes BAD! So, until they develop a type of celery that tastes good, it's off my menu — at least in its raw form.
- Soffritto - for a big batch of tomato sauce, bolognese or a batch of soup;
- Celery soup - somehow easier on the palate when sauteed and whizzed up with cream and seasoning;
- Throw a couple of stalks into your chicken soup or stock;
- Chop it up into a Waldorf salad - paired with walnuts and crunchy apples and coated in mayonnaise it's well disguised; or
- Slice it very finely and serve in a salad with crumbled, creamy, blue cheese and toasted hazelnuts with a lemony dressing.