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Braising celery this way brings out its rich flavor.
1 pound celery
2 tablespoons butter
Freshly ground black pepper
Wash the celery and cut off the leaves and any discolored parts. Cut the stalks in even lengths, about 3 inches long.
Sauté in the butter for about 5 minutes, then add about 1/2 inch of broth, just enough to keep the celery from burning. Season with salt and pepper, unless the stock is already well seasoned.
Cover and cook over low heat until the celery is just tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Put the celery in a serving dish.
BRAISED CELERY AU GRATIN - Arrange the braised celery in a shallow baking dish and add a little of the cooking liquid. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese and put under the broiler until the cheese has melted.
Serves 2 to 3