Chinese celery (Apium graveolens var. secalinum), also known as Oriental or East Asian celery, is a species of plant in the Apiaceae family native to China and other parts of Asia. It is used in many traditional Chinese dishes, either cooked or raw, and can be found fresh or preserved. This article will comprehensively overview Chinese celery, including its nutrition profile, health benefits, and different preparation methods.
What is Chinese Celery, and Why are they Popular?
Chinese celery is a variety of Apium graveolens, the species of plant that also includes common celery. The difference between Chinese and common celery is that Chinese celery has thinner stalks and a more intense flavor. In addition to its culinary use, Chinese celery is also used in traditional Chinese medicine for its health benefits.
History and Origin of Chinese Celery:
Chinese celery has existed for centuries, but its exact origin has yet to be discovered. It is believed to have originated in East Asia and spread from there. Although it is native to China and other parts of Asia, today, it can be found in many countries around the world.
Where are Chinese Celery Grown and Harvested?
Chinese celery is grown and harvested in many regions of Asia, including China, Japan, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Taiwan. It can also be found in some parts of North America and Europe.
Nutritional Benefits of Chinese Celery:
Chinese celery is an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It contains significant amounts of vitamin C, folate, potassium, and smaller amounts of calcium, iron, and magnesium. Additionally, Chinese celery is high in fiber and low in calories.
The Flavor Profile of Chinese Celery:
Chinese celery has a mild, slightly bitter flavor with an earthy aroma. It is usually eaten raw or lightly cooked and can add texture and flavor to any dish.
How to Pick Chinese Celery?
When selecting Chinese celery, look for stalks that are firm, green, and have no wilting or yellowing. Avoid bunches with thick stems or any signs of mold.
How to Store Chinese Celery?
Chinese celery should be stored in the refrigerator, wrapped in a damp paper towel, or placed in an airtight container. It can stay fresh for up to four days.
Ways to Use Chinese Celery in Everyday Life:
Chinese celery can be used in various dishes, both cooked and raw. It can be stir-fried with meats or vegetables, added to soups and salads, or served as an accompaniment to rice dishes. You can also pickle the stalks for a flavorful snack.
Chinese celery is a widely popular vegetable that is full of nutritional benefits. Its intense flavor makes it perfect for adding to both cooked and raw dishes. With its rich history, Chinese celery continues to be enjoyed in many regions worldwide. With just a few tips on selecting and storing it, you’ll soon be enjoying this flavorful vegetable in your kitchen.