I saw this recipe and just started laughing. Celery is one of the lowest-calorie vegetables out there, and we’re deep frying it.



Fried Celery Hearts – Mid-Century Recipe Guest Test Sunday
Author: Elvira C. Larson
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • Celery hearts
  • Fine bread crumbs
  1. Blend flour and egg, add milk gradually beating after each addition.
  2. Wash celery hearts thoroughly and separate into quarters. Cook in chicken broth or water for ten minutes. Drain.
  3. Dip celery in batter and then in fine bread crumbs and fry in deep fat (370° F.) three to six minutes until golden brown. Drain on absorbent paper and sprinkle with salt. Serve hot. This batter is sufficient for frying celery for 6 people.


But you can’t just deep fry celery. That would be silly. You obviously need to boil it first.


You’ll notice that there’s a handful of celery segments that still have their leaves included. I can’t stand celery leaves, but Buzz enjoys them, so I figured I’d leave a few intact.


The batter was extremely liquid — I would recommend only half the amount of milk that Elvira C. Larson called for. (Just something to think about the next time you’re deep frying celery.)


Oh, another something to think about: it’s really difficult to get a good photograph while deep frying! There are just so many bubbles. Plus it’s cooking pretty darn fast (we don’t want BURNT fried celery hearts) and so there’s a hilarious dance of grabbing the camera, attempting to get a reasonable picture, dropping the camera and grabbing the slotted spoon…

Also: salt these when they’re done frying. No point in ingesting greasy breaded vegetables if you’re not also upping your sodium intake.


In an attempt to make up for this “vegetable” side, I made steaks to go with. Unfortunately, that distraction can only go so far.


But it did lead to this picture (which I just had to share) — we asked the oldest kid to get sharp knives from the kitchen (nobody can cut a steak with a butter knife), and she came back with a handful of big cooking knives. THAT was a pretty good distraction from the celery.


Verdict: Forgettable.

From our tasting notes:

This isn’t actually that bad, but only because it’s hard to make bad deep-fried veggies. However: celery is flavorless. And when celery is briefly boiled, the flesh gets soft but the strings don’t — so trying to bite a piece off is pretty difficult. It’s also quite bland without salt. Finally: the celery leaves tasted a lot better than the stems, probably because there was a higher proportion of fried breading on them.