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Do you ever find a very limp bunch of celery stalks in the vegetable drawer? 
This is a great way to use up the celery and have a fairly elegant soup to start
off your dinner or for a very light lunch. Feel free to use nice fresh celery.
This recipe is here for our family friend Rick, who just got a computer and on
the internet and he requested that I put this recipe on the site for him.

1/4 cup parsley leaves
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 small bunch of celery, about 1 pound, including the leaves,
peeled (yes peeled) and cut up in about 2 inch pieces
3 tbsp. butter
1 large onion, quartered
1 large ripe pear, peeled and seeded and quartered
3 1/2 to 4 cups chicken stock
2 tbsp. non-fat cottage cheese or cream cheese
1/4 cup fat-free half and half (or use the good stuff if you can stand the calories)
salt and pepper to taste

Put parsley in a food processor and process until finely minced.  Set aside
for garnish at the end.  Add celery and garlic to food processor and pulse
a few times to combine and then leave the machine on constant power for
30 seconds. Melt butter in a 3-quart saucepan and add the celery and onion. 
Put the pears and onions in the food processor and mince until very fine. 
Add to the saucepan.    Cover and cook on medium-low for 10 minutes. 
Add 3 1/2 cups of chicken stock, bring to a boil.   Cover and simmer
gently, covered for about 35 minutes.  Strain liquid in a large bowl, pressing
on solids.  Add the solids back into the food processor and add the cottage
cheese.  Process the solids until they are very smooth.  If you did not peel the
celery this will be difficult, the strings will not become smooth.  Add the solids
and the liquid back into the saucepan and add the half and half. 
Season to taste with salt and pepper, it should not need much. 
Garnish with a generous amount of parsley and serve hot.


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