Celery has never been one of my favorite vegetables. On a scale of 1-10, 10 being vegetables I love and 1 being vegetables I really dislike, it’s probably a 3. I’ll eat it, but I don’t make any efforts to include it in my cooking. Nevertheless, I had a bunch of celery that’s been kicking it in the crisper drawer for a couple of weeks. And I don’t like throwing out food. I resolved to make a celery recipe.
I read about braised celery somewhere. It sounded exotic enough to pique my interest. I took a glance at The Flavor Bible, because I don’t cook celery and I didn’t know what flavors pair well with it. And I consulted How to Cook Everything Vegetarian because Mr. Bittman really does know how to cook everything and he’s never let me down.
Voila, braised celery with mustard glaze:
- 1 bunch of celery
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 heaping teaspoon dijon mustard
- olive oil
- freshly cracked pepper
- Trim the leaves off the celery. Reserve some for garnish. Peel the strings from the stalks using a vegetable peeler or paring knife. Chop into 2-3 inch sections.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Film the pan with oil. Add the onions and saute for a couple of minutes. Add the celery, continue to saute for 4-5 minutes.
- Add the vegetable broth, bay leaf, and pepper to taste. Allow broth to start to bubble, then reduce heat to low and cover.
- Simmer the celery for 15-20 minutes. Check the liquid level and add more water or broth if needed. Add in any leaves not being used for garnish. Cover and simmer for another 15-20 minutes.
- Uncover, discard the bay leaf and stir in the mustard. Return heat to medium-high. Cook for a minute or two to allow the liquid to reduce to a thick glaze. Garnish and serve.
(Serves 2 as a meal, 4 as a side)
The celery should be half-submerged in the cooking liquid. Add more liquid if it looks like it needs it. 1/4 cup of white wine would be a lovely addition. Sadly, I did not have any sitting around.
Also, I cheated and did not use actual vegetable broth. I used part of an Edward and Sons Not Chick’n Bouillon Cube. They’re gluten-free and vegan and much easier to store than broth.
After all the celery trash-talking above, I must say, we scarfed this down. The celery was very tender. Whoever thought up peeling celery should win a prize. The strings are pretty much my main issue with celery. Just get rid of them! Problem solved. The mustard added a nice tang, but it wasn’t overpowering. I might actually eat more celery now.