Back to the Kitchen: Spring recipes with glorious greens

Print This Post Print This Post


Greens are among the first to arrive in the garden this time of year.  Wild field greens are so easy to plant and will grow abundantly all summer long. Some of them are great to throw in a salad with a dressing that compliments the flavor of the greens and some of them need a little cooking and more preparation.

Both simple and exotic, I like mixing up greens for many fun flavors. I am working on a book project of everyday vegetarian recipes and everyday spiritual practices with my dear friend and yoga teacher, Skip Jennings — an awesome urban mystic, crystal healer and the best down home greens chef I have ever met! We love playing in the kitchen and I get the gift of learning so much from him. Skip says the main key to cooking greens  is: “Do not ever overcook them! Have fun and experiment with all flavors! ” Here are your some of our favorites so enjoy and eat your greens!

Skip’s Peace Kale Salad

This is a wonderful way of eating raw greens. When Skip brings it to me he has to double the recipe! I can’t stop eating them!

1 cup Organic Kale, Finely Chopped

1 cup Collard Greens, Finely Chopped

½ Cup Napa Cabbage, Finely Chopped

½ Cup Red Cabbage, Finely Chopped

¼ Cup Red Onion, diced

1 Cup Cooked Black eyed peas

½ Cup Raw Almonds, diced

½ cup Cranberries

Blood Orange Vinaigrette

1/2-cup blood orange juice

1 tablespoon finely chopped shallots

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1-cup olive oil

1/4-teaspoon salt

1/4-teaspoon pepper

Whisk together juice, shallots, and mustard. Slowly whisk in olive oil in a steady stream until combined. Season with salt and pepper and toss together with the Greens ingredients!

Stir Fry Mustard and Collard Greens

1 pound of Collard Greens, chopped

1 Pound of Mustard Greens, chopped

1 Large White Onion, sliced

4 large shallots, chopped

1 Garlic Clove, chopped

1 Large Green Pepper, chopped

1 tablespoon Fresh Oregano

1 tablespoon Fresh Basil

1 tablespoon Fresh Thyme

1- 4 teaspoons Yellow Curry Powder, to taste

½ teaspoon Pepper Corn (Whole)

Sea Salt

Saute Onion, Green Pepper, Shallots and Garlic in Olive oil over medium- high heat. Add in Collard Greens and Mustard Greens, (keep greens tender do not over cook) Add Oregano, Basil, Thyme, Curry Powder, Pepper corn, Sea Salt

Maple Balsamic Chick Peas with Mustard Greens

The sweet of the balsamic and maple syrup with the spice of the mustard greens make this a full flavor party in your mouth!

24 ounces mustard greens

1 red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 cup vegetable stock, divided

4 cloves garlic, chopped

Pinch of red pepper flakes

Pinch of teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1-teaspoon soy sauce

1/2-teaspoon maple syrup

2 cup cooked chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Remove any large stems from the greens and discard. Chop the leaves into bite-sized pieces. Sauté the onion in two tablespoons of vegetable stock until mostly faded to pink, about 4 minutes. Add the chopped garlic and red pepper and another tablespoon of stock and cook, stirring, for another minute. Add the mustard greens, the rest of the stock, and cook, stirring, until greens are wilted but still bright green, about 3 minutes. Stir in the salt. Remove greens and onions from pan with a slotted spoon and place in a serving dish, leaving any liquid in pan.

Add the balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, and maple syrup to the liquid in the pan (if there is no liquid, add 2 tablespoons of broth). Add the chickpeas and cook, stirring, over medium heat until the liquid is reduced by about half. Spoon the chickpeas over the greens and drizzle the sauce over all. Serve warm, with additional balsamic vinegar at the table.

Skip’s Stir Fry Kale

Again, you can double the recipe, these greens are that good!

1 Large Red Onion, chopped

I Large Garlic Clove, chopped

1 Yellow Pepper, chopped

1 bunch Kale, chopped

1 Sprig Rosemary

Pinch Sea Salt

Crushed Red Pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons basil, chopped

2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

¼ cup Raw Almonds

Sautee Onion, Yellow Pepper and Garlic until Tender in olive oil. Stir Fry Kale for minute. Do not over cook keep crunchy and light green. Season with Red Pepper and Sea Salt. Top with Basil and Cilantro and Almonds

Lasagna with Mustard and Collard Greens

This is a lighter version of traditional lasagna as I also use fresh mozzarella and sheep’s milk ricotta.

2 pounds mustard greens, chopped

2 pounds collard greens, chopped

2 cups sheep’s milk ricotta

2 cups fresh Mozzarella, grated

3-5 cups Tomato Sauce-recipe below

1 8-ounce box no boil lasagna noodles

1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

Bring 3 cups salted water to a boil and pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Blanch the greens until tender and firm about 2 minutes. Pour into a colander and push to remove as much liquid as you can. Lightly oil a 9 by 13 inch baking pan. Spread about one cup of sauce over the bottom. Add a layer of noodles and then a layer of sauce. Spread a thin layer of ricotta and then sprinkle some greens and mozzarella. Repeat 3 times ending with sauce. Sprinkle to with Parmesan cheese and bake covered with foil for 25 minutes. Then remove foil and bake an additional 10 minutes. Let stand for 15 minutes before slicing and cut into 4-inch squares and serve with remaining sauce!

Basic Tomato Sauce

1/2-cup olive oil

2 onions, chopped

3 large carrots, chopped

6 cloves garlic

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2-teaspoon crushed red pepper, to taste

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch salt/ fresh pepper

12 Tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced

1/2 cup red wine (or 1/4 cup vinegar mixed with 1/4 cup water.)

In a large saucepan heat oil. Sauté onions, carrots, garlic and seasoning. Add tomatoes and wine and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir and smash the tomatoes. You can use a fork or an emulsion blender. Simmer for30 minutes longer.

Note –If you add a 1/2-teaspoon of baking soda to your sauce it greatly cuts down on the acidity of the tomatoes and gives it a much smother flavor!

Share this:
Facebook Twitter Pinterest Plusone Digg Linkedin Stumbleupon Email

About Karen Young

Karen Young is the founder of My Daily Find.

More in Featured, Food, Recipes, spotlight
My Daily Find Weekend Fun Guide

BY KAREN YOUNG Take a drive, stay local, eat, exercise, learn, be entertained. It's that kind of weekend. Just get...