While this recipe is deceptively simple to make, it is sophisticated and elegant to serve. The toasted walnuts and lemon walnut oil vinaigrette pair perfectly with the crunchy celery and flavorful celery leaves. It looks beautiful when plated and garnished with delicate celery hearts, feeding the eye as well as the palate.
Celery is not just a crunchy, low calorie, vehicle for peanut butter and dips, it is a vegetable superstar with a long list of impressive health benefits. Celery and celery seeds have been used medicinally for centuries, particularly as a diuretic. Today we know that celery contains phytochemical compounds that are known as coumarins, which are capable of enhancing the activities of certain white blood cells. These coumarin compounds stimulate the vascular system, helping to lower blood pressure and reduce migraines.
Celery is known as a dieters friend because it is low in calories, high in water and can satisfy the need to chew – but celery is so much more. It is an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamins B6 and B1 and is loaded with insoluble dietary fiber. It is an excellent source of potassium and folic acid.
Celery is loaded with an anti-inflammatory compound called apigenin, which is concentrated in the stalks, along with a dozen other anti-inflammatories that make it super beneficial. Celery can help to lower blood pressure, fight gout, and lower cholesterol. Because it contains acetylene’s, phenolic acids, and coumarins, celery is a potential cancer fighter as well.
I love celery for its flavor, but the fact that it has so many health benefits makes it worth adding to your diet. This recipe uses all parts of the celery and is easy to make as part of a healthy weeknight dinner, or an impressive salad for guests. Because the leaves actually contain the highest amounts of calcium, potassium, and vitamin C, be sure to use them as I have in this recipe, they are delicious. Enjoy this crunchy and flavorful salad.
Celery, Celery Leaf & Walnut Salad Recipe
1 bunch of celery, remove leaves and place in separate bowl, reserving a few for garnish.
1/2 cup toasted walnut pieces
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup good quality walnut oil
1 Tbs. finely chopped shallot
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- Slice celery crosswise into 1/3″ slices.
- Whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, walnut oil, shallot, salt and pepper.
- Place celery slices and celery leaves together in a bowl, toss with 1/2 cup dressing, taste and add more dressing if needed.
- Add walnuts and toss again, garnish with remaining celery leaves
Tired of eating salad? Check out this great Celery Root Mashed Potatoes Recipe instead!