Celery is a healthy vegetable that has surprisingly many options for use. We can eat its stalks raw or together with a dip, we can put its leaves to the salad or make soups and casseroles with it.
Want to know how to preserve celery? In this article, we will give you the answer.
How Long Does Celery Last Under Different Conditions?
Celery is not only a healthy vegetable as it contains vitamins A, B, K, and C, and many useful elements and minerals that influence positively our body and its systems. No wonder that this vegetable became so popular and is widely used for cooking today! You can use celery leaves, seeds, and stalks when making salads, soups, and stew. You can even eat it raw!
Obviously, prudent housewives may wonder how to keep this vegetable correctly, as well as what the duration of its shelf-life is.
The main significant feature of celery is its crispness and juicy stalks. To preserve these, make sure you keep your celery under proper conditions.
- To make celery remain fresh and crispy, cut off its base and leaves. Then cut the stalks in half and put this chopped celery into a bowl or plastic container. Pour cold water (filtered would be the best) to cover the stalks a bit and close the container using the lid. It is ok to keep your celery like this in the refrigerator for several days and the vegetable will remain fresh.
- There is an easier method. Just take a high glass, pour fresh cold water in it and put your celery in the glass – just as you do with flowers. Remember to cut off its base before you put it in the water! When being stored this way, celery can last up to two weeks in the fridge.
- Another method is to simply wrap celery stalks into an aluminum foil, only make sure you delete its base part in advance.
Can celery be frozen?
Can you freeze celery? Even despite the belief that this vegetable is pretty tricky to freeze, the answer will anyway be yes, you can store celery frozen. In fact, it is the optimal way to keep this vegetable eatable longer.
Nevertheless, freezing has its specifics and frozen celery will more likely have reduced crispness which makes it usable for cooking only but not for eating raw. Also, if you decide to freeze it, it will be better if you slice the celery into the proper size pieces because it is very difficult to cut it after it was frozen.
How long is celery good for when frozen?
After it is affected by the frost, celery can remain eatable for about twelve of eighteen months (1-1.5 years). Nevertheless, you can use it even after that date is passed.
How to store celery in the freezer?
If you decide to freeze some celery, it is better to keep it there blanched in a proper container.
And now, let’s check out several most handy methods of freezing celery at home.
It can, however, you will need to take into account several specific features regarding its frozen state to keep it crispy and fresh for further use.
In case you want to preserve the celery to the longest, it is required to blanch it in advance.
How to blanch celery?
- Just wash your celery, cut its stalks in pieces and immerse them into boiling water for one minute.
- Then take it out and put into ice water immediately
- Drain the vegetable and let it dry
- Then put celery into the freezing bag and freeze.
If you do not want blanch celery
- Take apart its stalks and wash the dirt off
- Dry them with a paper towel and slice into small pieces (bite-size will be just fine)
- Spread the bits on a baking sheet evenly in one thin layer and freeze for a couple of hours
- Now you can pack up your celery into plastic bags for freezing. Remember to remove most of the air out of them!
Now you can put celery to the freezer and keep it for several months!
Things to Remember When Freezing Celery
Making celery frozen may seem easy, nevertheless, it is essential to know how to prepare celery for storage if you want it to last longer.
- Always check if your celery is dry before you put it to the freezer, especially if you blanched it. Dry celery is easier to separate after it’s frozen.
- After you took the celery out of the freezer, use it immediately, don’t let it defrost! Otherwise, it will get a bad odor and get spoiled.
- Never re-freeze your celery as, after it defrosted and frozen later again, it will lose much of its qualities and may even get rotten.
How to Freeze Celery. Precise Instruction
Now, let’s talk about how exactly to freeze celery.
The best way of doing that is to prepare the celery first before you toss in to freeze.
- Take your celery you’re going to freeze.
- Cut off its base and separate the stalks from each other. Like that, you will manage to wash them more thoroughly.
- Wash the stalks and cut them in pieces.
- Now you need to blanch the chopped celery. This is not a big deal, simply immerse its bits into boiling water for 2 or 3 minutes and then take then out.
- When the celery is pulled out of its boiling “bath”, drain it and submerge in cold water. Let it stay there for 5 minutes.
- Now it’s a time to drain the celery bits and toss them into any frost-friendly bag. Ensure you previously removed the air from it.
It’s time for freezing your celery now!
You can also freeze raw celery but you need to be aware that, at that point, it will lose most of its crispness and will be better to use in soups and other hot dishes. Eating defrosted raw celery simply won’t work.
Preserving Celery. Q&A
To give you a hand with those freezing troubles, here are the most common questions people ask when dealing with celery in the kitchen.
Can you freeze fresh celery?
Fresh or raw celery can be frozen, however, its crispness will be reduced and you wouldn’t like to eat it straight away after defrosting. That’s why defrosted raw celery is only good for hot dishes.
Can you freeze celery and carrots for soup?
Another troublesome issue for a cook. Can you freeze carrots and celery together? These vegetables can be kept in the freezer together only after you blanch them. Blanching will preserve their taste whilst freezing raw vegetables will ruin it.
Can you freeze celery leaves?
It may surprise you but celery leaves can be frozen. To preserve them, you can either leave them on the stalks and freeze those together or cut the leaves off and freeze them in a plastic bag wrapped in the shape of a cigar.
Does celery freeze well?
Celery is pretty easy to freeze, however, it may change its texture due to the amount of water it contains.
How to blanch celery?
Blanching won’t take much time. All that is required is to immerse the cut celery into boiling water for several minutes.
Can you freeze celery stalks?
Yes, you can. In fact, stalks is the most common part of this vegetable to freeze.
How to cut celery sticks?
When you chop celery, you need to ensure that no dirt is left between the stalks. That’s why it is recommended to separate the stalks from each other and wash them meticulously before you cut them.
How to Prepare Celery. Recipes to Use
Celery can be used in many dishes and it is up to you which one to choose to enjoy this vegetable to its full.
For example, the easiest way to use celery is to eat it raw or along with the dip. For that purpose, you simply need to wash and cut the celery into long stick-shaped pieces.
Also, celery leaves can go to the salads (for example, to the Ceasar salad).
If you want to make something hot, add some celery stalks to the roasted chicken or make a celery creamy soup, or you can also make some bulgur with the salmon and celery.
Celery stalks and leaves are also good for sandwiches and toasts, as well as for the rolls with seafood as the filler.
You can even add it to the drinks!
What to Do With the Leftover Celery. Tips and Ideas
If you happened to have some celery leftovers and don’t know how to use them, use one of the following ideas.
- Use it in stock. Celery fits meat, seafood or vegetables perfectly!
- Cook a celery with a creamy baked gratin with some crushed nuts on top.
- Waldorf salad can also be a good option if your celery stalks are still crispy.
- Creamy celery soup or a bulgur salad with herbs will also work well for any table.
- Vegetable stew or the oven-baked chicken go with celery perfectly good, too.
These life hacks will allow you to preserve celery fresh and crispy no matter whether you bought it in a store or it is a freshly picked celery from the garden.
Using these storage methods is simple and doesn’t take much time, nevertheless, they are very efficient and always show good results.
Celery is a healthy vegetable that gives a pleasant flavor to the dishes, that is why it is better to learn to keep it under proper conditions to prolong its shelf-life and enjoy its taste longer in many different ways.