Through the Fire
Most of us know somewhere in our brain how good greens are for us. Even if it’s memories of Popeye eating his spinach. Now we have kale everywhere – chips, juice, smoothies, on and on thanks to vegans,hipsters, and Ryan Gosling.
Are you on the kale bandwagon ? Do you know how many other kinds of greens you could have in addition to kale ? How about Swiss Chard ? Collard greens ? Beet and turnip greens? mustard greens ? All kinds of Asian greens ? Dandelion greens? Spinach? to name a few. I think in most recipes calling for a dark leafy green, they are interchangeable. Some of them such as kale and collards are tougher/thicker and will take longer to cook. Some of them such as the mustard greens are spicy and will add some heat. Dandelions will add some bitterness.
I love them all.
I have some news for those who swear by their daily kale juices and smoothies. Kale and collards are in the cruciferous vegetable family. Cruciferous vegetables contain chemicals that block the production of thyroid hormones. So if you are a person who has hypothyroidism which is very commonplace these days, it’s best to eat those vegetables cooked.
Spinach, chard, and beet greens contain oxalic acid which can be irritating to the digestive system, help in the formation of kidney stones, and block calcium and iron absorption. Cooking reduces this substance so best to cook those greens too.
I’m not saying you can’t ever have that green smoothie full of kale and spinach, just not on a regular basis. Dark leafy lettuces are a better choice for raw consumption.
I usually have a blend of a few kinds of greens. The way I love the best – sauté some onion or leek in butter or coconut oil. Add a big old mess of thinly sliced greens. Use those chard and beet stems. Use the thinner stems from the other greens. Sauté for a few minutes. Add a sprinkle of broth to the pan. Cover and let them steam until done. ( you may need additional broth) Sometimes I cook a few slices of bacon. Remove from the pan. Eat one of them! come on, unless you are a vegetarian/vegan you know you will anyway. Follow the above guidelines using the bacon fat. When the greens are done, crumble the other cooked pieces of bacon ( unless you ate it all) over the greens.
I did some research for you and found the following delicious sounding recipes, all of which I plan to make soon.
So, step out of the comfort zone and try some new greens. Let me know what you think.
Here’s what Thumper had to say in that heart breaking movie, Bambi. ( I still won’t watch it again!) I don’t agree with all of what he says but he says it so sweetly.