Thursday, June 2, 2011

Get More Greens!

By now, we all know that Greens are some of the healthiest vegetables around. Adding more greens to your natural health diet doesn't just mean lettuce salads. The darkest greens from the garden are loaded with vitamins and minerals. To soften their flavors a little, add a bit of sweetness or acidity when cooking. Aromatics such as ginger, garlic or shallots also help. Check out these 5 great greens:

1. Dandelion greens: earthy, nutty flavor with a sharp, tart bite. Use them wilted in a warm salad, saute for a healthy side with caramelized onions or add to soups, frittatas, pastas and gratins.

2. Bok choy: stalks are crisp and taste similar to cabbage while leaves offer a nutty flavor. It's great for stir fry dishes and may also be sauteed.

3. Rainbow chard: although each color has a slightly different taste, it most resembles spinach with a hint of beets. Saute for use in stuffing, egg dishes or as a topping for crostini.

4. Collard greens: mild and earthy with a nutty finish. They need to be cooked either very quickly or very slowly; the leaves are tough and must be braised or stewed to make them tender.

5. Tuscan kale: an earthy, nutty and slightly sweet taste. It's best to braise kale in chicken broth or other liquids, drain well and saute with oil and garlic.

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