Food Buzz

Because maybe you do care what I had for lunch...

Saturday, February 03, 2007

What's for dinner? Greens

Maggie wrote asking for recipes using greens, which was good timing for me. I've just had my annual check-up and my doctor told me how much calcium I should be getting every day. I can either have four servings of dairy a day or start eating a lot more greens. In fact, kale has as much calcium as two cups of milk!

I started by poaching some kale and having it with a little lemon juice and salt, and it's pretty good that way. You can also slice it very thin and mix it into mashed potatoes or any quiche recipe. I looked into my Greenmarket Cookbook and found this recipe for braised greens by chef Bill Telepan.

Braised winter greens

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1 onion, finely chopped
2 pounds braising greens, such as chard, mustard, escarole, or turnip tops, coarsely chopped, washed, and lightly drained
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Melt the butter in a deep skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until soft, about 6 minutes. Add the greens with any water clinging to the leaves and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Season with the salt and pepper.

I've been doing something similar with greens for years -- braising them in olive oil and minced garlic instead of butter and onion. Tuesday night I made Bill's version with mustard greens and curly kale. Sweet, not bitter!

As long as you're eating something virtuous like greens you really should counteract the healthy benefits by baking some cheese in puff pastry. This is very easy to do. Simply wrap a small round of brie or Camembert in puff pastry, trimming the excess dough, and place the cheese fold-side down in a baking dish. Brush the top with egg and bake until golden, about 15-20 minutes in a 400-degree oven. You may want to seek out a cheese with a mild-tasting rind for this. Eat immediately and enjoy the oozing, melty goodness.

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