Celery Seeds

16 Interesting Facts About Celery Seed

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Celery seed comes from a plant that is closely related to celery. The small, brown seeds have a very strong and bitter taste. They are commonly used as a spice to flavor foods including pickles, salad dressings, soups, and bread. Beyond adding flavor, celery seed has some interesting health benefits as well.

Let’s take a look at 16 fascinating facts about this underrated spice:

Facts About Celery Seed

  1. Celery seeds come from a plant known as smallage or wild celery. This plant looks very similar to regular celery that we eat, but smaller and more bitter tasting.
  2. The seeds are typically very small in size, around 1 to 2 mm long. They are light brown in color.
  3. Celery seeds contain an essential oil called selinene which gives them their bitter, celery-like taste.
  4. In addition to selinene, the seeds contain other healthy oils and antioxidants including limonene, flavonoids, and coumarins.
  5. Celery seed has been used for centuries in ancient Greek, Indian, Chinese and Egyptian medicine to help treat various conditions.
  6. Celery seed is rich in vitamins and minerals like zinc, magnesium, calcium, iron, phosphorus, and vitamins A, C, and B2.
  7. It can provide some important health benefits thanks to its nutrient content. Celery seed may help:
    • Lower inflammation
    • Reduce blood pressure
    • Benefit arthritis
    • Prevent ulcers
    • Support liver health
  8. The spice contains compounds that act as diuretics, meaning they can help the body flush out excess fluid and salt.
  9. Early studies show celery seed may help lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels as well.
  10. Celery seeds contain antioxidant and antimicrobial properties. The antioxidants help protect cells from damage while the antimicrobials kill off or slow the growth of bacteria.
  11. The spice is commonly used in pickling recipes. The flavor stands up well to vinegar and salt.
  12. In the United States, celery seeds are often used to top bloody mary cocktails and give them a signature flavor.
  13. The seeds can be used whole or ground into a powder to add flavor to recipes. Whole seeds will give a more potent flavor.
  14. In addition to the seeds being used to flavor foods, celery seed oil, and extract are used as well for things like perfumes.
  15. Celery seeds have an extremely strong and bitter taste on their own. It’s best to use them in small amounts to lightly flavor foods. Start with 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon per recipe.
  16. Look for celery seeds in the spice aisle sold in small jars or bags. Make sure they look fresh and have their signature strong aroma. Store the seeds in an airtight container in a cool, dark place.

So there you have it – 16 fascinating facts about the underrated but very healthy and flavorful celery seed! This spice has been used for health and cooking for ages. Give it a try by sprinkling some onto soups, breads, dressings, and more. Just be sure to use a light hand as the flavor can quickly become overpowering. Enjoy getting to know this special little seed.

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