I have a confession: I’m really don’t care for celery. I like the idea of it — a fibrous, vitamin-rich, low calorie food. I like the crunch a fine dice of celery can add to a chicken or pasta salad. It was even a life saver as a cool teether during those gummy teething days (weeks? months?).
But, I can’t bring myself to eat much of it. I end up with a huge bunch of it after only needing a stalk or two for said salad, and then it begins a slow decline in my vegetable crisper until it meets its compost fate.
To reduce food waste and maximize my grocery budget, I now do one of three things with that sad bunch of celery: 1) I chop it up for use for sparing use in green smoothies, 2) I chop it up and put it in a freezer bag to add to a homemade stock, or my absolute favorite, 3) I make celery soup.
Yes. An entire soup of my despised celery. And It. Is. Delightful.
It’s mild, refreshing, quick and easy to make (one pot and done). It can be eaten hot or cold, so you can make it year round. It’s a pureed soup, making it easy to add to reusable pouches or even a straw cup for easy on the go meals for little ones. It uses minimal ingredients that you usually have on hand. I can go on and on but one of my favorite parts is the required lemon squeeze and optional dollop of sour cream I add at the end. Celery. Who knew?
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 12 to 15 large celery stalks, leafy area and brown bottom removed, chopped roughly about 1/2 inch thick
- 1 small or medium yellow or white onion, roughly chopped
- 1 small to medium baking potato, peeled and chopped to roughly 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 small cloves garlic, crushed and very coursely chopped.
- 5 cups low sodium or no salt added chicken stock (or, water works also!)
- Pinch of coarse salt
- Pepper to taste
- 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon mild yellow curry powder
- 1/4 cup fresh herbs, roughly chopped (recommend flat leaf parsley or dill or combo of both)
- 1 lemon, freshly squeezed
- Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, till shimmering but not smoking.
- Add celery, onion, and potato; season with curry powder, a pinch of salt (or omit and add table side) and a few grinds of a pepper mill to taste.
- Stir occasionally, making sure vegetables begin to soften but do not brown, about 10 minutes.
- Stir garlic in for about 30 seconds to release flavor, making sure not to burn.
- Add 5 cups of the liquid; bringing to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes, adding herbs about half way through the cooking time.
- Remove from heat and using an immersion blender, puree until smooth. If the soup is too thick, add additional liquid (water or stock) until desired consistency.
- Serve warm or cold with a squeeze of lemon (a must!) and garnish with a sprinkle of parsley, dill or celery leaves and a creamy (optional) dollop of sour cream.
- This soup can separate slightly or thicken additionally in the fridge, so stir before serving if eating cold. The lemon makes this soup, so don't forget to swirl some in!