Essential Greens-Cooking Guide

How to prepare and cook nutrient-packed fresh greens.

Dark leafy greens, such as kale, collards and chard, are nutrient powerhouses—rich in vitamins A, C and K. Look for greens in bunches in the produce section near lettuce; beets are sometimes sold with the greens still attached, but you can often find the greens sold separately as well. One pound of greens cooks down to about 1 cup, so plan accordingly.

Swiss Chard

Prep: Wash in several changes of water; drain. Strip large leaves from the edible stems. Pull strings from stems; cut stems crosswise into 1-inch lengths. Bunch up leaves and cut into 1-inch pieces.

Cooking: Cook in 2 cups lightly salted boiling water. Add stems first and cook for 5 minutes, then add leaves. Full-size leaves cook in about 10 minutes. Steam young leaves for 5 minutes. Drain and press out moisture.

Yield: 4 servings, about 1/2 cup each

Per serving: 21 calories; 0 g fat (0 g sat, 0 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 4 g carbohydrate; 2 g protein; 2 g fiber; 185 mg sodium. Nutrition bonus: 130% Daily Value vitamin A, 30% DV vitamin C, 15% DV iron.

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