Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Trim the stalks to around 12cm from the base of each celery heart. Reserve any loose stalks from the outside and keep for future use – maybe a bloody Mary. Cut the brown base off the bottom in a thin sliver, being careful to keep all the stalks attached and intact. Cut the hearts into quarters, or halves, lengthways. Place in a shallow, rectangle ovenproof dish (a lasagne dish is ideal).
Pour over the wine and chicken stock. Scatter with peppercorns and bay leaves. Sprinkle with lemon juice, dot with butter and cover the dish with foil.
Bake for 1½ hours or until the celery is very tender. Perfect with roast pheasant, or chicken, remembering that the celery juice can be incorporated into the gravy.