I separate cooking greens into to categories.
Mild and/or tender, which includes spinach, beet greens and swiss chard.
Or, tough and/or bitter, which includes pretty much anything else, like collards, kale, brassica leaves (kohlrabi, broccoli, cauliflower etc.), turnip and rutabaga leaves, radish leaves.
The mild/tender greens are easy. The little ones can be eaten raw. Larger ones, briefly steamed and tossed with butter and salt.
The tough/bitter ones take a little more work for me to find them palatable. I have a few recipes that I use, but all employ similar techniques, plenty of fat, a braising liquid, and strong flavors.
Tonight, we are having fried chicken, mashed potatoes and greens for dinner. So I will do the greens with bacon and ham stock.
- 4 slices thick bacon, cut into batons
- 10-12 cups tough/bitter greens (tonight we are having broccoli leaves
- 2 cups ham stock
- 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
Slowly render the bacon in a large pot, until crispy. This will take around 20 minutes.
Remove the stem, and slice the greens into 1 inch ribbons.
Add the greens to the pot with the bacon and bacon fat. Pour the ham stock over everything.
Increase the heat to medium, and braise until tender, around 20 minutes.
Finish with the apple cider vinegar, and season according to preference.