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Think Globally, Eat Low-cal-ly: Celery Soup
Taking Stalk

Taking Stalk

When I was a kid, my mother got me to eat celery by slathering a layer of peanut butter across the top.  When I learned to cook, I discovered that celery was part of the holy trinity of veggies that make up mirepoix (onions and carrots being the other two), the base for a lot of classical soups and sauces.  When I became a parent, I found out it was also good for smallish pets.

Celery.  Moms love it.  The French love it.  Guinea pigs too!

And it doesn’t stop there.

This long stringy vegetable is all over the appetizer table.  Typically found circling a bowl of dip (low-cal or otherwise) in the company of sliced carrots, cucumbers and the occasional more exotic vegetables (What? broccoli, bell peppers?!), celery is among the most popular crudités.  Sliced celery stalks also play a part in many salads, the most famous being the Waldorf with its mix of apples, walnuts and you know what.

What each of these dishes have in common is that they’re all healthy.  Something my children clearly have no interest in as they hardly touch their PB & C anymore.  It’s of great interest to me, though, since I’ve put on a number of pounds since summer began.  Not that I’m looking forward to the next swimsuit season before this one even ends.  That would be too pathetic.  I just want to get back to eating right again.  And exercising.  I want to start doing that again too.

Celery is, you see, a great diet food.  It has lots of fiber, a great crunch, and a nice mild taste, especially when you cook it.  What it doesn’t have is a lot of calories.

Sadly, being a healthy food is not usually a real rallying cry to the table.  Unless you make it into something delicious.

Happily, I can report that this week’s soup tastes really good.  It’s light and flavorful and a perfect choice for these final sweltering days of summer.

There’s nothing to it, either.  You just slice the celery, toss it into a pot with the onion, stock and seasonings, set it to simmer, and you’re pretty much done.  No sautéing, no roasting, no pureeing, no nothing.  And that’s not such a bad thing.  With the mercury still up in the high 80’s/low 90’s and the humidity continuing to add its own special comforts, the last place you want to be hunched over is a hot stove.

Wouldn’t you rather get outside and enjoy the last few moments of summer?

This soup lets you.

Don’t wait another minute.  The calendar has already turned its back on August. The kids are back in school.  The pool closes for the season after this last, long weekend.

There’ll be time enough to play inside in the fall and winter.  The rowing machine will still be there…

in the basement…

with the guinea pigs.

Celery Soup
(serves 8-12)
1 ½ lbs, celery, sliced thin
½ cup onion, sliced
6 cups vegetable stock
1 T tarragon, dried (sorry)
Salt & pepper, to taste

  1. Clean and slice celery stalks.
  2. Place celery, onion, stock, tarragon, salt and pepper into a pot.  Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  3. What?  You’d rather there were more to do?  Serve it already.  Warm.

Image Credit: Celery on a scale.  Pretty funny, huh? Is there anything clip art can’t do?

Celery stalk, celery root, celery seed, celery salt, celeriac.  There are a lot of varieties, but when it comes to being paid.  I prefer a salary.  How about you?  Let me know.  I’ll be reading and responding.

2 Comments to “Think Globally, Eat Low-cal-ly: Celery Soup”

  1. Titania says:

    After reading all your intro’s to your soups, It came to me that the New Yorker should have a chef’s column. But what do I know, I’m just your mother.

    • pcandres says:

      I’m sure it’s just a matter of time before the New Yorker comes to that same conclusion. I wouldn’t want to make them feel bad by making it seem like it was my idea. If you want to call them, though…