Celery is a biennial plant used as a culinary herb for its flavor and aroma. It is used both as vegetable and spice. The celery herb is native to Northern and western Europe. Stalk and seeds of the celery herb are used for food flavoring. It is also known as Chinese celery or Oriental celery. Celery is valued not only for its prized stalks but also for its leaves, roots and seeds. The essential content of the Celery seed includes terpenes and the sesquiterpenes ß-selinene and humulene. The fragrance is the result of phthalides that occurs only in traces.
Celery is rich in nutrients and is good for health. The most important nutrients possessed by celery are Vitamin C, vitamin B1, vitamin A, vitamin K, Vitamin E, potassium, foliate, dietary fiber, manganese, calcium, magnesium, Zinc, tryptophan, phosphorus, riboflavin and iron. Celery is a rich source of Vitamin C. It helps in increasing the immunity level, helps in fighting cold, helpful in asthma, osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It promotes cardiovascular health and reduces the cholesterol level. The herb has stimulant, nourishing and restorative properties. It is often taken in liquefied form as a cure for joint and urinary tract inflammations, for weak conditions, and also for nervous exhaustion.
While celery stalk is used for its flavor in different cuisines, the seeds are used as a spice. The seeds are combined with salt to form a spice blend, popularly known as celery salt, which is used as an alternative to common salt. It is also used to flavor various cocktails. It is also used in beverages, confections, baked goods and soups. The ground form is used in salami, bologna, frankfurters, knockwurst, sausages, corned beef and bloody mary drinks.