All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Kinsai/serina Chinese celery

Apium graveolens var. dulce
Kinsai has strong aroma and taste than those of Western celery (Apium graveolens L.), even after cooking. Kinsai's flavor is one of the strongest among all Asian vegetables we eat at home. Compared to common celery, kinsai has skinnier and longer stems, and both stems and leaves are darker green. When kinsai is not available, celery is usually called for as a substitute.

Kato Kiyomasa (1562-1611), a feudal lord of today's Kumamoto Prefecture, is said to have introduced kinsai to Japan, bringing it from Korea in the late 16th century. But use of kinsai did not become widespread due to its strong smell and taste. Even with milder Western celery, cultivation in Japan started only in the 19th century, mainly for Western ship crews, and it took until the 1950s-60s for the vegetable to finally become a relatively common ingredient at home as Western dishes gradually became popular. Kinsai, with its much stronger taste and aroma, is still not very common in Japan.

is rich in beta-carotene (1800 µg/100 g), whose antioxidant property is believed to control cancer cell proliferation. Carotene becomes a lipid solution Vitamin A in the body, meaning the nutrient is better absorbed when taken with oil. Vitamin A also maintains skin and mucus health. Moreover, kinsai is rich in minerals, including potassium (360 mg) and calcium (140 mg). Potassium helps get rid of excess sodium from the body and is useful for controlling hypertension.

In the US, kinsai is found at Chinese and Korean grocery stores.

19 kcal/100 g; 93.5% water, 1.1% protein, 0.4% fat, 3.5% carbohydrate, 1.2% ash

Recipes with kinsai

Try kinsai in the following recipes

(Last updated: August 29, 2017)

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