Flat-Leaf Parsley and “Wild” Celery

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Mediterranean Vegetarian Feasts

By Aglaia Kremezi

Published 2014

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Flat-leaf parsley is the most prevalent herb in the Mediterranean. Its flavor is more prominent and aromatic than the decorative curly variety, which is rarely used in this part of the world.

Mediterranean, or French, celery is a thin-stalked, dark-green leafy plant that Americans call “wild” celery. Although it does grow wild in the mountains, it is also cultivated for consumption. This leafy celery has a strong taste with a slight bitter undertone, and it is rarely consumed raw. You can find it in Asian markets under the name kun choi or kin tsai. You can also grow your own (for seeds, see Sources). If you find it in your farmers’ market, buy a lot: Wash it, chop it coarsely, and store in zip-top bags in the freezer; it will keep for about six months. Thick-stalked American celery with some flat-leaf parsley can be substituted, but the taste is much milder.