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This is a dish hailing from the Victorian era.  It was so popular that special dishes were made just for it.


The Middle stalks from two heads of celery *


About 2 cups of defatted, low sodium chicken broth, stock or bouillon

2 to 3 cloves of garlic, crushed

A slice from a yellow onion, about ¼ inch thick

¼ teaspoon crushed fennel seeds



Sliced black olives

Fresh coarse ground black pepper


Wash and trim the celery and blanch. Drain well and set aside.


Put the chicken broth in a heavy skillet large enough to hold the celery comfortably.  Add the garlic, onion and fennel seeds to the stock or broth and bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a rapid simmer and continue to cook until the liquid has been reduced by about half.  Add the celery to the broth and simmer for about five minutes, or until tender but not dead. Turn frequently to make sure that all the stalks get cooked evenly. 


Remove the celery from the pan and rinse well under cold running water, shake dry and set aside to drain.  Strain the remaining broth in the skillet and allow to cool.  When the celery is well drained, place on an attractive serving dish and pour the cooled, reduced broth over it.  Scatter with small bits of pimento and sliced black olives.  Finish with a generous grinding of fresh black pepper.  Chill well before serving.


By middle I mean, not the two or three large outer stalks and not the very small stalks in the heart of the head of celery, but the medium size stalks in the center of the head, usually between; ones between about four to six or seven inches long.  Leave the greenery on them.




        Copyright © 2008 - Geraldine Duncann