Barely Braised Greens

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This recipe is a great way to add some power-packed greens to a meal. These barely braised greens are simple to make and will not disappoint.

Differences in Greens

How do different greens stack up against one another? Take a look at my rankings of how they compare and contrast in flavor (sweet to bitter), texture (fibrous to tender), key vitamins, and amount of fiber per 100 g serving.

If you are cooking with sweet greens, use milder flavors and sweet fats like coconut milk, whereas bitter greens hold up well to all kinds of vinegars. Never underestimate the power of vinegar to finish cooking greens! The acid is exactly what the greens need for that final tenderization.

Tender greens take less cooking time than fibrous greens, and they are more delicious raw in salad. Who even has time to massage kale to salad deliciousness? On the other hand in a in lovely stew, a fibrous green has the staying power to handle the heat.

Which Braised Greens to Choose?

Curly Kale

Flavor: Slightly bitter and peppery

Texture: Chewy, tough and fibrous. Basically the most delicious cardboard shards you’ve ever eaten.

Vitamin Content: Medium levels of calcium, potassium, vitamin K, and magnesium.

Fiber Content: 2 g

Lacinato Kale

Flavor: Milder in flavor than curly kale

Texture: Waxy and crispier than curly kale,

Vitamin Content: Medium levels of calcium, potassium, vitamin K, and magnesium.

Fiber Content: 2 g

Collards

Flavor: Can be mild to pungent, slightly smoky

Texture: Stiff leaves soften more slowly than other greens when cooked.

Vitamin Content: High levels of Vitamins C and E and folate. Also has high levels of calcium.

Fiber Content: 4 g

Chard

Flavor: Varies depending on whether you have yellow, red, or white. Slightly bitter with a flavor crossed between beet greens and spinach.

Texture: Waxy, tender, cooks in seconds.

Vitamin Content: High levels of magnesium, potassium and Vitamin K.

Fiber Content: 3 g

Turnip Greens

Flavor: The smaller the leaves, the more mild the flavor. Larger leaves have the distinct flavor and aroma of turnips.

Texture: Generally tender, but can stew for hours and hours without breaking down completely.

Vitamin Content: High in vitamins K, A, C and folate, and also contains diverse minerals like calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.

Fiber Content: 3.2 g

Mustard Greens

Flavor: Distinctly peppery

Texture: Tender leaves that may have lacy, fragile edges.

Vitamin Content: High in Vitamins K, A, and C. Contains folate and manganese.

Fiber Content: 3.2 g

Dandelion Greens

Flavor: Earthy, nutty, and bitter.

Texture: Tender, spiky leaves.

Vitamin Content: Excellent source of Vitamins A, C and K. Also contains Vitamin E, folate, and small amounts of B vitamins.

Fiber Content: 4 g

Make it a Meal

While it may sound crazy. Braised Greens make a great topper for Butternut Squash Soup. Add a few pumpkin seeds or apples to make it a fall treat.

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Barely Braised Greens

Prep Time: 5 minutes Cook Time: 5 minutes
Yield:2 Servings

Ingredients

3 Tablespoons olive oil

1/2 medium onion

1 clove of garlic, chopped

4 ounces mixed greens (kale, collard, mustard, or other greens of your choice), about 3-4 cups chopped and well packed

Splash of balsamic vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add onion and sauté until translucent. Next, add chopped garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  3. Add greens stirring to thoroughly coat with oil.
  4. Continue stirring until greens are barely wilted.
  5. Add splash of balsamic vinegar, and continue stirring until greens are barely tender. (Add 1 tablespoon water and steam for a moment, if greens prove hard to breakdown.
  6. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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