In Japan, celery is not cheap. It’s not sold in bunches; it’s sold by the stalk – and a stalk costs about a dollar.
Strangely enough, I miss that.
I don’t miss the price so much (though it did have the virtue of discouraging waste), but I do miss being able to buy just what I need. Maybe it’s my imagination, but bunches of celery seem much bigger than they were 15 years ago – and buying that much celery makes me uncomfortable. I wonder if I’ll be able to use it all before it shrivels up and becomes unusable. When you’ve thought in terms of individual stalks for so long, the thought of half a bunch of celery in the bin feels … well … just a little bit obscene.
So, since I’ve moved to the US, I’ve spent some time experimenting with things I can do with celery that has lost its crunch (besides throwing it out). One of the easiest is to toss it in a blender with some water, a bit of sugar or honey, and something to add a little extra flavor, like lime, ginger or vanilla. It’s better tasting than a soft drink, better for you, and better for the planet – and if you miss the fizz, you can always get a soda maker.
The recipe for the version I made yesterday (which was pretty tasty) follows.
Celery-ginger limeade (2 servings)
- 3 cups water
- 6 stalks celery (about 18 ounces), coarsely chopped
- I lime, peeled and quartered
- 1 piece ginger root about the size of your thumb, coarsely chopped
- 2.5 Tbsp sugar (or to taste)
- Blend ingredients on highest speed until liquified.
- Filter through a cotton kitchen towel, or wire mesh strainer.
|Celery per serving||3 stalks|
|Length of celery per 12 oz serving, if stalks laid end to end||about 99 inches|
|Average distance from the Earth to the moon||238,855 miles|
|Number of 12 oz servings it would take to use up the amount of celery which, if laid end to end, would span the average distance from the Earth to the moon||152,867,200|
|Amount of celery-ginger limeade every American would have to drink to save that amount of celery from landfill||5.8 oz – ½ of a 12 oz serving|
|Average annual consumption of soft drinks per person in the US||57 gallons – 608 12 oz servings|