Until late in my life, I didn’t really eat greens, and when I’d had them they’d always been Collard greens cooked forever with ham hocks or salt pork – delicious, but something I’ve avoided because of the higher fat and long cooking process.
That was a shame because any of the greens, turnip, kale, collard, and beet greens are powerhouses of nutritional value. Even radish greens are great for you!
About Braised Turnip Greens:
Then steps in my sister-in-law. Her turnip Greens were fresh, bright, healthy, AND delicious – and I’m a convert. She doesn’t use recipes – just throws things together and they turn out wonderfully. So I watched her, and called her, and made them and made them again.
Even so, I need a little guide, so I’ve cobbled together a rough recipe. Greens are so good for you, we eat good-sized servings, and some would probably consider this a double portion. You could certainly start with one bunch if you have small children and only want modest portions.
The date in this recipe is a surprise ingredient, I know! My sister-in-law used a bit of sugar, but I was inspired…try it, it is truly wonderful in the recipe. A few raisins would work as well. They add just a touch of sweetness and an indescribable flavor that enhances the greens. I’ve always loved to add a touch of vinegar to my greens; here you’ll see it in the recipe, but try drizzling a little over the final dish. Just a little trick from my German grandpa! A little lemon juice is favored by some people, instead.
Making Braised Turnip Greens:
These are super easy to make. For prep, do wash your greens well. There’s no need to trim out any of the thinner stalks, but you may wish to tear or cut out the heavier stalks on the bottom.
You’ll start by sauteeing the onions until translucent, then add the dates if using, then toss in the greens. From there you add the remaining ingredients, part of which is a little chicken broth, and steam the greens, covered until done to your liking.
This recipe works well for tender turnip greens. If using Kale or Collard greens they will need to cook a little longer, and you’ll need to watch your liquid.
You can vary the recipe and add an Italian flair by using garlic and a few red pepper flakes. Anchovycan stand in for the dates for an extra flavor boost. If you’d like to give a nod to the Southern roots of the recipe, saute bacon with the onion. If you’d like to make a larger amount and have some to freeze, this recipe is ideal. Simply cook more and divvy it up into Ziplocs and freeze.
Saving Money on Braised Turnip Greens:
Buying your greens in season and at a store that normally carries a large selection is generally the cheapest way (other than through alternative routes like a farmer’s market or CSA) to buy your greens.
Don’t waste the stalks; you’ve paid for them, after all. Save and add to your morning smoothies for a great nutritional boost. I use these parts and pieces in my morning Green Smoothies. These would be ideal, too, for your compost pile.Print
Braised Turnip Greens – Healthy Style
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- Category: side
- Cuisine: American
- 2 bunches of turnip greens, washed, heavy stem removed, sliced across into ribbons 1/2″ thick
- 2 teaspoons oil
- 1/2 onion, finely diced
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar (I like to use 2 dates, finely chopped)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vinegar ( balsamic or red wine, but even apple cider or plain old white vinegar is fine.) Have additional for serving.
Saute onion in oil until softened. When nearly soft, add in dates, if using. Add greens and stir with a tong until they’re beginning to wilt. Add in the rest of the ingredients, including sugar if not using dates, cover and steam until tender, but still bright in color, about 8 to 10 minutes.
These greens tend to cook a bit more after the heat is turned off – remove them from the hot pan and give them a toss or two to bring them to a more normal serving temperature.
Serve with additional vinegar for drizzling over the top.
- Calories: 126
- Sugar: 3,35
- Sodium: 235
- Fat: 7.38
- Carbohydrates: 10
- Fiber: 3.37
- Protein: 4,32