Some people say you use more calories to digest a stalk of celery than the amount of calories that the vegetable provides! So, does that mean I can lose weight by just eating celery. Hardly … but it doesn’t matter. I happen to love celery, both raw and cooked.

Celery is defined as a cultivated plant of the parsley family. Many people don’t eat the stalk but use the green leafs in salads or the seeds as a spice. I love to use the stalks in salads. Did you know that if you shave off the outside of a stalk, it will not taste so bitter? This is a much easier way to get your kids to eat celery. You can also add it to lettuce salads, potato salad or pasta salads for that extra crunch.

Huffington Post has come up with recipes that they claim are freakishly delicious. The first on their list is a celery soda. Using the stalks and some spices, the recipe calls for making a syrup that is then added to seltzer water for the fizz. It is not overly sweet, but a little spicy.

The Celery Stir-Fry recipe sounded good to me and it’s so simple to make.

Celery Stir Fry

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil or light sesame oil
  • 3 dried chile peppers, broken in half
  • 4 cups julienned celery
  • 1-2 tablespoons soy sauce (to taste)

Directions

  1. Heat the oils and chilies in a wok or frying pan over high heat for 90 seconds or until the chiles become fragrant and the seeds sizzle.
  2. Add celery and stir-fry for 3 minutes.
  3. Add soy sauce and stir-fry one more minute.
  4. Serve hot or at room temperature.

If stir fry isn’t your thing, why not try a celery soup? Made with celery, onion, potato, chicken or turkey stock, spices and heavy cream, this soup is exceptionally good.

A celery, blue cheese and hazelnut salad is a great holiday side dish that pairs well with prime rib or roast beef. For added sweetness, add some dates or dried cranberries to go along with the maple glazed toasted hazelnuts.

Or simply make some braised celery. In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of butter, add your celery, (cut into 1 inch strips) and some salt and pepper and cook until the celery starts to become tender. Add ½ cup of vegetable broth and simmer covered for 5 minute then remove cover and cook for 5 minutes longer. Garnish it with some of the celery leaves and you have a side dish for a holiday feast.

These are just a few things you can do with the undervalued vegetable. For a snack, I will still be spreading on a little butter and some salt and crunching away!