Here are some suggestions for handling those healthful green leafy vegetables.
As a general rule, the smaller the leaf, the younger and more tender the green.
Young baby greens can be served raw in salads or sandwiches.
Fresh parsley is more than just a garnish – it’s also a leafy dark green vegetable that’s chock full of nutrients. Try adding chopped parsley to salads or soups; double the amount you use in dishes such as potato salad; or finely chop a bunch of parsley, toss it with chopped fresh tomato, olive oil, vinegar, and cooked rice, bulgur, or white beans.
Tender greens such as spinach, Swiss chard, and beet greens need only brief cooking. Thoroughly wash the greens and trim off any tough stems. Do not dry the leaves. (Remove Swiss chard leaves from the stem and cook stems in a small amount of water for a few minutes before adding the leaves.) Place the cleaned greens in a large, heavy pot or skillet, and cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until wilted. Drain and press out excess liquid.
Mature greens such as kale, mustard, and collard greens should be braised. Wash well and trim tough stems, then add the clean greens to a large pot and cover with water or chicken or vegetable broth. Cook until tender. Cooking time will depend on the maturity of the greens. Drain, press out excess liquid, and chop.
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