Pimento cheese is one of those foods that has been so corrupted by the food industry that it has become synonymous with other crappy foods like Spam. I'm not even certain what store bought pimento cheese might contain, nor do I want to find out. It's a shame because pimento cheese can be a delightful treat, even if it does Read the full post…
In a few days it will officially be fall but the temperatures are still warm enough for me to continue swimming for a few more days. The breeze was a little cool but that didn't stop me from swimming several laps this morning and I felt great afterwards! Have you exercised lately? With fall's cooler temperatures and fewer insects, you Read the full post…
A friend of mine was recently diagnosed with shingles so I felt I should discuss this nasty virus once again. If you ever had chicken pox, you are at risk for getting shingles and believe me, you don't want it. Shingles is a painful rash with blisters that scab over and may take 4 weeks or more to heal. The Read the full post…
There are times when I think I could easily become a vegetarian, especially when I try a new dish that is as good as the vegetarian tacos I had at Local Lime restaurant in Little Rock and the tofu fried rice at Sai Tai here in Jonesboro. My husband and I celebrated our 23rd anniversary this past weekend by spending Read the full post…
Summer is winding down , the year is more than half way over and our January resolutions are long forgotten. It's time for a health reality check. First of all, how is your health lately? If you have enjoyed good health, are you thankful? Take some time to appreciate how wonderful it feels to be healthy, for your family to Read the full post…
I'm back from a lovely beach vacation and I wish I was still there with all my heart. Wouldn't it be nice if our every day life was as nice as a vacation? If we could relax, eat well, sleep and exercise just enough without having to worry about bills, work, illnesses and school, our lives would be perfect. But Read the full post…
Mention collards, turnip or mustard greens and many people may not have a clue what they are or be able to tell the difference. Most people are familiar with spinach, broccoli and various lettuces and may even eat them. But we seldom think about dark leafy greens and how important they are to our diet. I hope your family eats some kind of dark leafy green vegetable several times a week. Low in calories but powerhouses of nutrition, leafy dark green vegetables often get a bum rap.
Greens may be the most concentrated source of nutrition of any food, calorie for calorie. They are rich in minerals like iron, calcium and potassium and vitamins like K, C, E and many of the B vitamins. Greens are especially high in vitamin K which most people lack. Vitamin K protects bones from osteoporosis, may prevent and reduce calcium in plaque buildup (plaque buildup leads to heart attacks), may protect against inflammatory diseases like arthritis and may protect against diabetes. You might have noticed I used the word MAY alot in the last sentence and be thinking, “If there is no proof, why should I eat yucky vegetables?” The point is that there is ALOT of proof that Americans are getting fatter, more unhealthy, with diabetes, high blood pressure, various cancers and heart disease on the rise. It is a fact that we eat less vegetables and more sodas and junk food in much higher quantities so that is all the proof I need.
Here is a list of dark, leafy green vegetables you can try.
1. Kale – Cooks like spinach so try it in soups or salads.
2. Collards – Used in traditional Southern cooking, collards have a chewier texture and can be used as a wrap in place of a tortilla.
3. Turnip – The leafy top of the turnip can be cooked and eaten. Turnip greens are more tender.
4. Spinach – Spinach is popular raw in salads but is actually more nutritious when cooked. Add to soups or quickly sauté.
5. Swiss Chard – You can eat the stalks but they need longer to cook. Try sautéing or steaming.
6. Mustard greens – These greens are also a Southern staple but have a peppery or spicy taste.
7. Broccoli – Yes broccoli is considered part of this group and is such a versatile vegetable. Don’t turn up your nose but give it a try.
8. Cabbage – Though sometimes pale in color, cabbage is also part of this food group.
9. Iceberg and other lettuces – Iceberg is the most popular but also the least nutritional of the lettuce family. Try some of the other lettuces in your next salad.
As with anything, you have to try various cooking methods before deciding whether you truly like a certain food. Many people like raw broccoli or spinach better than cooked for example. I got a bag of turnip greens at the last farmers’ market. Try preparing them this way; it is quick and easy and my husband particularly liked them.
2 slices bacon
large bag of turnip greens, thoroughly washed and coarsely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
red pepper flakes to taste
Chop bacon and fry it in a large skillet until just beginning to brown. Add greens and sauté, stirring frequently. Greens are done when they have wilted and are tender but not mushy. Salt and pepper to taste and add a bit of red pepper flakes. Serve immediately.
Upadated on October 2, 2012
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