Dark leafy greens, such as spinach, chard, collards, kale, mustard, beet and turnip greens, top the list of the most nutritious vegetables. They supply abundant amounts of vitamins, minerals and protective phytochemicals. However, these greens are often overlooked because many people are uncertain as to how to prepare them. Supermarkets are now taking most of the work out of preparing greens by offering pre-washed an packaged mixes that are ready to cook.
These greens are most effective after parboiling for about ten minutes. The major exception is spinach, which is usually tender enough after a brief saute. To maximize the nutrition potential of the greens, save the cooking water to use as a soup base. Broth from the greens may be kept in the refrigerator for up to a week or frozen for up to two months. The following is a basic recipe for greens that can be modified to suit individual taste. Try adding diced red bell pepper, toasted chopped nuts or a drizzle of dark sesame oil. Enjoy!
- 2 green bunches or 1 pound of mixed greens washed. (Remove long stems and tough ribs.)
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
Immerse the greens into a large pot of boiling water and cook for 10 minutes. Heat the oil in a skillet and saute the onion and garlic until soft. Add the greens and 1/2 cup vegetable broth to the skillet and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until tender. May season if desire. Serves 3-4.