Discover 5 Delicious Methods for Preparing Spring Greens


Spring is here and that means one thing: fresh and delicious spring greens. There are so many ways to enjoy these tender, nutritious leaves. Whether they’re collard greens, cavolo nero, or something else entirely, you can’t go wrong with these versatile and flavorful veggies. Here are five simple and tasty recipes to get you started.

1. Southern-style collard greens

If you’re a fan of southern cuisine, then you know that collard greens are a staple. This recipe takes the traditional, slow-cooked approach, but with a little twist. Instead of cooking the greens with bacon or ham hock, it uses smoked paprika and vegetable stock for a vegan-friendly option. Serve with cornbread and a squeeze of lemon juice for a truly southern experience.

2. Cavolo nero salad

Cavolo nero, also known as Tuscan kale, is a dark, leafy green with a slightly bitter taste. It’s packed with nutrients and makes a lovely base for a salad. Simply remove the tough stems and tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces. Massage them with a little olive oil and lemon juice to soften them up, then top with your favorite salad toppings. It’s a delicious and refreshing way to enjoy spring greens.

3. Stir-fried spring greens

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to cook your spring greens, stir-frying is the way to go. Heat a little oil in a pan and add your greens, along with some garlic and ginger for added flavor. Cook until the greens are wilted and tender, then season with soy sauce and sesame oil. Serve with rice or noodles for a satisfying and healthy meal.

4. Crispy roasted kale

Kale chips have been all the rage for the past few years, and for good reason. They’re a delicious and healthy alternative to potato chips. To make them, simply remove the stems from your kale leaves and tear them into small pieces. Toss them with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper, then spread them out on a baking sheet. Bake at a high heat until crispy and enjoy!

5. Spring green pasta

Pasta is always a crowd-pleaser, and adding some spring greens to the mix makes it even better. Start by cooking your pasta according to the instructions on the package. In the meantime, heat some olive oil in a pan and add your greens, along with some garlic and chili flakes. Cook until the greens are wilted, then toss with the cooked pasta and a little Parmesan cheese. It’s a quick and delicious way to enjoy the flavors of spring.

There you have it – five ways to cook spring greens. Whether you prefer them sautéed, roasted, or raw, there’s a recipe here for everyone. So go ahead and pick up some fresh greens from your local farmer’s market or grocery store, and get cooking!

Southern Collard Greens Recipe Just like your Grandma’s recipe

If you’re looking for a taste of true southern cuisine, there’s nothing quite like Grandma’s recipe for collard greens. These greens are a staple of southern cooking and have a rich history in the African-American community. Many families have their own unique twist on this classic dish, but here’s a recipe that stays true to the traditional flavors.

To start, you’ll need a big pot to cook your greens in. Make sure to clean the collard greens thoroughly, removing any dirt or damaged leaves. Once they’re clean, stack the leaves on top of each other and roll them up tightly. Then, slice the rolled-up greens into thin strips.

In a separate pot, melt some butter over medium heat. Add in some chopped garlic and cook until it becomes fragrant. Then, toss in your collard greens and stir them around in the butter and garlic mixture. The greens will start to wilt and shrink down, so don’t be afraid to pack the pot full.

Next, it’s time to give your collard greens that authentic southern touch. To do this, you’ll need some smoked meat. Many people use smoked ham hocks or turkey legs, but you can also use bacon or even smoked sausage. Add the smoked meat to the pot and cover it with water. Allow everything to simmer for at least an hour, stirring occasionally.

While your greens are cooking, you can prepare a simple but flavorful seasoning mixture. In a small bowl, combine salt, pepper, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. This will give your greens a bit of heat. You can also add chopped onions and a splash of apple cider vinegar for extra flavor.

Once your greens have simmered for about an hour, stir in the seasoning mixture. Let everything cook for another 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together. It’s important to taste your greens along the way and adjust the seasoning as needed. Some people prefer their greens more salty, while others like them with a tangier kick.

When your collard greens are done cooking, serve them up hot with a side of cornbread or freshly baked biscuits. Some people like to pour a bit of the leftover pot likker (the flavorful liquid that the greens cook in) over the greens for added richness.

This recipe is sure to be a hit with your family and friends, and will transport you back to the flavors of your childhood. Give it a try the next time you’re looking to add some southern flair to your meals!

What Are Collard Greens

Collard greens are a type of leafy green vegetable that is popular in Southern cooking. They are a member of the Brassica family, which also includes other vegetables like kale and cabbage. Collard greens have large, dark green leaves that are thick and sturdy, with a slightly bitter taste.

Collard greens are often used in traditional dishes like collard greens and ham or cooked with bacon for added flavor. They can also be sautéed, steamed, or boiled until tender. Collard greens are versatile and can be used in a variety of recipes, including soups, stews, and stir-fries.

To prepare collard greens, remove the tough stems and wash the leaves thoroughly to remove any dirt or grit. If you prefer a softer texture, you can blanch them by boiling for a few minutes and then immersing them in ice water. This helps to remove some of the bitterness.

Collard greens are rich in nutrients, including vitamins A, C, and K, as well as fiber and minerals. They are also low in calories and fat, making them a healthy addition to your diet. Collard greens can be enjoyed by themselves or in combination with other vegetables.

If you’re looking for a simple and delicious way to enjoy collard greens, try making collard green chips. Dehydrated collard greens make a crispy and nutritious snack. Simply toss the leaves in olive oil, sprinkle with salt and your favorite herbs or spices, and bake at a low temperature until crispy.

In conclusion, collard greens are a nutritious and versatile leafy green vegetable that can be enjoyed in a variety of dishes. Whether you’re a fan of Southern cooking or looking to incorporate more greens into your diet, collard greens are a great choice.

How To Pick The Best

When it comes to spring greens, there are many options to choose from. Whether you prefer collard greens, kale, or something more exotic like nigella or coriander, selecting the best greens is essential to make the most out of your meals.

If you have a little garden, you can pick some greens right in your backyard or balcony herbs. This way, you can be sure that they are fresh and full of flavor. Just make sure to thoroughly wash them before cooking to remove any dirt or pest residue.

If you don’t have a garden, the best place to find fresh spring greens is at your local grocery store. Sainsbury’s always has a great selection of greens, from traditional collard greens to more exotic varieties. Just make sure to check the leaves for any visible signs of wilting or yellowing.

Another option is to buy dehydrated greens. These are usually found in tiny packets and can be rehydrated by soaking them in water for a few minutes. While they might not taste as fresh as the ones you pick or buy from the store, they can still be a good option if you can’t find fresh greens.

When selecting greens, make sure to check the leaves and stems for any signs of damage or wilting. The leaves should be vibrant and crisp, not limp or discolored. Also, give them a good sniff – they should have a fresh, earthy scent. If they smell musty or sour, it’s best to avoid them.

Some greens, like collard greens, have a thick stem that needs to be removed before cooking. To do this, simply hold the leafy end of the stem with one hand and use the other hand to slide your fingers along the stem, stripping off the leaf. This will remove any tough or fibrous parts of the stem and allow for a more tender and flavorful result.

If you’re a southerner, you might be familiar with the term “likker”. Likker refers to the flavorful liquid that is left behind after cooking greens. It’s a traditional practice to serve the greens and their likker together, as the likker is packed with vitamins and minerals. Keeping the likker also helps to maintain the greens’ taste and nutritional value.

So, whether you’re making a simple side of sautéed greens or a more elaborate recipe like Ghayour’s greens with garlic and yoghurt, picking the best greens will always make a difference. Your taste buds and digestive system will thank you for it!

How to Clean Greens

Cleaning greens is an essential step in preparing them for cooking. Whether you are a southerner looking to make some traditional collard greens or a kale lover wanting to serve up a healthy dish, properly cleaning the greens is necessary to remove any dirt or debris. Here are five simple steps to clean your greens:

  1. Step 1: Fill a large pot or sink with cold water. Make sure there is enough water to fully submerge the greens.
  2. Step 2: Add a tablespoon of salt to the water. The salt helps to remove any dirt or insects that might be hiding in the greens.
  3. Step 3: Remove the tough stems from the greens. Discard the stems or save them for another recipe.
  4. Step 4: Place the greens in the water and swish them around. This will help to loosen any dirt or debris.
  5. Step 5: Lift the greens out of the water and rinse them under cold running water. Repeat this process until the water runs clear and there is no more dirt or debris.

Once the greens are clean, you can proceed with your recipe. Whether you are making a classic Southern dish like collard greens or trying something new like a vegan kale salad, these clean greens will allow you to manage the full flavor of the ingredients and ensure the best results in your cookery.

✿ Read More: Gardening Tips and Advice.

Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.