Did you know that this humble, ubiquitous vegetable was highly prized in ancient times as medicine and a powerful aphrodisiac?
Often neglected on the crudite platter, or under appreciated as the frivolous garnishing to your Bloody Mary, this jade-green stalky member of the Apiaceae family was initially used for its healing properties by the Greeks and Romans, and did not gain popularity as a food until the Middle Ages. Modern research substantiates traditional wisdom as scientists report that celery contains a substance that increases androsterone, a male pheromone derived from testosterone, which makes men more attractive to women, scent wise. As a matter of fact , Casanova ate celery daily to boost his legendary libido.
In addition to being an aphrodisiac, here are some amazing benefits of celery to be enjoyed by both men & women:
- Helps to lower high blood pressure.
According to Dr. Michael Murray, eating 4 ribs of raw celery a day may reduce high blood pressure to healthy levels. (See end of post for reference.)
- Extremely low in calories, high in fiber, and containing over 80% water, celery is the perfect food to snack on, especially for weight management. (I love it with tahini, or almond butter.)
- Due to celery’s high content of potassium, vitamin C, and other minerals; it is nourishing to the adrenals and supports relief of stress and anxiety.
- Acts as a diuretic, which helps to remove excess fluid retention.
- Contains natural sodium; about 100 mg. per 2 ribs.
Celery is also a very aromatic vegetable that adds wonderful flavors to foods, especially poultry. I made this dish last weekend using celery salt, and fresh celery plus other Spring vegetables, along with a free range chicken. The combination of Celtic sea salt and celery can’t be beat, not only for flavoring, but also to increase adrenal support and boost amorous pursuits!
This recipe is incredible simple, and easy to clean up afterwards as it is all done in one roasting pan.
One whole free range chicken
(you can also use whole drumsticks, or breasts, with skin)
3 tsp. celery salt
(I highly recommend the Celery Salt blend from Celtic Sea Salt. It is made from organic celery from All Star Organics )
Fresh ground pepper
5-6 medium shallots, peeled
1 medium carrot, peeled and roll cut into 1″ pieces
4 – 5 celery stalks, cut into 2 inch lengths
celery heart, cut in half
1 medium fennel bulb, cut into wedges
The secret to a tasty, juicy bird is to rub the seasoning under the skin. First, pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees F. Then, begin by gently inserting your index finger between the skin and the flesh at the breast and place in a little celery salt and rub it in while lifting the skin, working from the base towards the neck.
Repeat the same with the other breast and back side of the chicken, then top with fresh ground pepper over the skin. Cut a slit with a pair of scissors on one leg and insert the other leg through. (See photo) Doing this will keep the bird nice and tight while roasting to keep in moisture, and to retain its shape.
Now line a roasting pan with parchment paper and suspend a rack over the pan. Place the seasoned bird over the rack and place in the oven.
After 15 minutes at 425 F, lower the temperature to 375 F and continue to roast chicken for about 35 minutes.
Then, carefully lift rack with chicken off, and place chopped vegetables into the pan over the parchment lining. Season vegetables with a little more celery salt and fresh ground pepper. (The dripping from the chicken will make the vegetables richly delicious!)
Return rack with chicken over the pan, and continue to roast until the bird is done and the vegetables are tender (about 30 minutes.) Internal temperature of the chicken should be 165 degrees F.
Remove the roasted chicken and place on a cutting board, breast side down for about 8 – 10 minutes. Resting the bird this way helps to concentrate moisture back into the breasts.
Serve immediately with the vegetables.
For Love of Food and Friends,
Murray, Dr. Michael. Total Body Tune Up. New York:Bantam Books, 2000. (p. 220)
www.whfoods.org (World’s Healthiest Foods)