When a simple salad needs some crunch, call on celery

|     Ellie Krieger     |

CELERY had long languished as an underrated vegetable until it suddenly became Instagram-famous for completely unsubstantiated claims about magical healing properties. Never mind all that and enjoy it for what it is: an accessible, good-for-you vegetable that deserves to be brought out of the background and onto centre stage.

Celery offers so many more culinary possibilities than you probably imagine – it is wonderful braised or stir-fried, for example, and it totally pops as a cool, crisp base for a winter salad.

This recipe plays the mild, juicy crunch of the vegetable against a creamy, pungent blue cheese dressing made more healthful by swapping out some of the typical mayonnaise with yogurt, which also adds a lovely light tang.

Sliced radishes and flecks of fresh chives add colour and flavour, resulting in a simple salad with an elegance that belies its humble ingredients. It is destined to be in your repertoire well after celery’s 15 minutes of fame has passed. – Text & Photo by The Washington Post

Celery salad with blue cheese dressing

Celery salad with blue cheese dressing

FOUR servings

Ingredients:

One large bunch celery, preferably with leaves

Three medium red radishes, thinly sliced into half moons

1/4 cup plain whole-milk yogurt (not Greek)

Two tablespoons mayonnaise

Two teaspoons vinegar

1/2 teaspoon honey

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/3 cup crumbled blue cheese

One heaping tablespoon chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Steps:

1. Use a peeler to remove the stringy outer layer of the four or five outermost dark green celery ribs.

Cut the white bottom end away from the remaining paler, leafy stalks. Remove the pale innermost leaves and coarsely chop them.

Slice the stalks thinly on the diagonal, and place both the sliced stalks and the leaves in a large bowl with the radishes.

2. Whisk together the yogurt, mayonnaise, vinegar, honey, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Stir in the cheese, then add the dressing to the bowl of celery and radish, tossing to coat.

3. Sprinkle with the chives and serve.