[Sometimes, you just want to eat something now. I’ve decided to offer a mini-post every once in a while, for a dish that comes together incredibly quickly or else is so easy to make that no recipe is required. Here’s today’s “Flash in the Pan.” (For other FitP recipes, see “Categories” at right).]
[With Collards, Chard and Red Onion]
It’s been a truly crazy past week, what with our new semester starting up today at the college and my cookbook deadline being perilously close.* (And let’s not forget the Golden Globes from last evening–didn’t B & A look marvelous amidst the hubub and Moet & Chandon? And did you hear that Tracy Morgan is the new face of the US? But Mamma Mia, that Ms. Streep is timeless! ) With all that, there’s been no time for handiwork in the kitchen.
Instead, here’s what I’ve been eating lately–and by “lately,” I mean pretty much every day. I’ve made this three times in the past six days: it’s quick, it’s easy, it’s delicious and it contains nature’s most nutritious vegetables, leafy greens. And with all the deep browns, ochres, ambers and ecrus I’ve been consuming over the past few weeks, I figured it was time for some green.
[With Collards and Yellow Onion]
Besides, I adore leafy greens and have been trying to include them in my diet more often. Jagged, zippy dandelion greens are like the tough kid in the schoolyard, the punk who wears his black leather jacket like a trophy and loiters in the corner of the schoolyard chain-smoking. With a hard and bitter exterior, he’s really a sweetheart once you get to know him. Collards, with their elegant, frond-like shape, are the modern jazz dancers of the group, deftly swaying side to side as they harmoniously meld the delicate and the cacophonous. And kale, my very favorite, is the ditzy neighbour, the plucky, perky best friend, the Mary Richards of leafy greens; she fidgets and bobs and sighs histrionically, clad in her ruffly collar and matching cuffs–she’s a little wacky, maybe, but always honest and reliable. How could you not love greens?
This dish was created when I had intended to try out a recipe for brussels sprouts and apples I read about on Vegalicious a while back. When I discovered I had no sprouts, I opted for the greens instead (heck, they’re all brassicas, right?). Using the other recipe for inspiration, I threw this together. It was ready in ten minutes, and I was left to marvel that something so simple could taste so good.
The barely-wilted greens are chewy and toothsome, while the apples and onions, having softened and caramelized slightly, provide a balancing sweetness to the slightly bitter leaves. The addition of lemon juice here, besides imparting an appealing tang, renders the minerals in the vegetables more bio-available (and thereby more easily absorbed) so you can best benefit from their high mineral content.
* As to the cookbook, right now, it looks as if the publication date will be mid-April; I’ll report back as soon as I’m given a “firm” date from the publisher. What this means, however, is that my blogging may become slightly more sporadic over the next few weeks, as will my commenting on other blogs. But know that I’ll keep reading and enjoying all of your blogs even if I don’t make my presence known. And I do hope that you will still comment here–I always look forward to, and read, every single comment on this site–it is truly a high point in my day!
Sautéed Greens with Onions and Apples
inspired by this recipe
Perfect as a quick weekday side dish or a great lunch main, this recipe comes together in no time an is infinitely adaptable: for a main course, add cubed tofu or lgihtly toasted nuts or seeds. A few raisins or currants tossed in would also work well. And feel free to switch up the greens or combine several types for equally good results.
1 large bunch collard greens, chad, kale or a combination
1 medium red or yellow onion, cut in half and sliced thinly
2 Tbsp. (30 ml.) extra virgin olive oil, preferably organic
1-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 large sweet apple (I used Gala),washed, cored, cut in eighths and sliced
1-2 tsp. (5-10 ml.) apple cider vinegar
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper, to taste
Wash and dry the greens and remove any thick stems. Stack the leaves in batches, roll up along the long side, then cut across the roll into slices, creating thin strips. Set aside.
Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in frypan and add the onion; sauté until the onion begins to soften and turn translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and apple slices and continue to sauté until the apples begin to soften, another 2-3 minutes. Add the greens, vinegar, lemon juice, and salt and pepper. Toss briefly to coat the greens, then cover and allow the steam to wilt the greens, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve immediately. Makes 4 side dish or 2 main course servings.
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Last Year at this Time: Asian-Inspired Napa Cabbage Salad
© 2009 Ricki Heller
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