Celery salt is one of my favorite things in the spice cabinet. I love a hefty dose of it in potato salad, macaroni salad, and coleslaw. I love it sprinkled over potatoes, eggs, as well as fish and seafood. To be honest, it goes perfectly fine in any dish where you add would add celery, such as soups and stews.
When I saw that Heidi Swanson made her own celery salt I knew I wanted to give it a try. I looked in several markets for really leafy celery, but none of it appeared overly leafy. I finally decided I'd just have to go with it and I was pleasantly surprised. Most of the leaves were trapped inside. I'd say I got about a cup of leaves in total. Plenty of leaves for what I needed.
Heidi provides two methods for dehydrating the celery leaves: the stove top and the oven. I decided to go the oven route. I feel like it was the safest option for me since I have a tendency to forget things when they're on the stove top. The oven method took about 6-7 minutes.
In no time at all I had my own homemade celery salt, perfect for sprinkling on just about anything!
Homemade Celery Salt
Adapted from 101 Cookbooks
by Heidi Swanson
Leaves from one bunch of celery
Flaky sea salt (coarse, not fine)
Pick the leaves from each celery stalk, leaving the stems behind. The outer leaves tend to be dark green and hearty, the inner leaves pale green and tender. I use them all.
Rinse the leaves with cold water in a strainer, then shake off as much of the water as you can. At this point you want to dry the leaves as much as possible, so they toast (not steam) when you cook them. Gently pat them dry in a clean dish towel, or paper towels. Once dry you have two options for toasting the leaves.
Option 1: If I have a lot of leaves, I arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet, then bake in in a 350F oven for about 5-7 minutes. Bake until dehydrated and crispy, but not browned.
Option 2: If I have fewer leaves, or just don't feel like heating the oven, I'll throw them in a large skillet. Single layer if possible, over medium-low heat. Again, you want to barely toast them, not brown them much at all.
In either case, when you're done cooking, remove from heat and let the leaves cool completely. They'll crispy up even more at this point. When cool, use your fingers to crumble the leaves completely, discarding any leaves that aren't crispy.
Combine equal parts celery leaves and salt in a jar, and either stir or shake to distribute the celery leaves evenly throughout.
|Accompaniments @ I Heart Cooking Clubs