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Trio of Winter Greens

Trio of Winter Greens

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Makes 8 Servings


  • 7 tablespoons butter

  • 1 9-ounce package fresh spinach

  • 8 ounces escarole, coarsely chopped

  • 1 5-ounce head of frisée, coarsely torn

Recipe Preparation

  • Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add half of greens; toss to wilt very slightly, about 30 seconds. Add remaining greens and toss just to warm and wilt slightly, about 1 1/2 minutes. Transfer to platter and serve.

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The classic Tabouli (or Tabbouleh) Salad is made with bulgur, mint, parsley, tomatoes, cucumbers and a lemony garlic dressing, but I love to spruce mine up with seasonal wild greens. For this Tabouli I added some of the earliest wild edibles sprouting up now, greens like tender miner’s lettuce, peppery bittercress, and the oniony sprigs of crow garlic. This trio is amongst the tastiest of the late winter/early spring greens and all are easy to find, growing prolifically across the PNW. And they’ll transform your already healthy Tabouli salad into a nutritional powerhouse!

Young Miner’s Lettuce Greens

Probably the earliest greens around here are miner’s lettuce. Think of miner’s lettuce as spinach – only better tasting. Mild with a nice fresh crunch, i t likes cool temperatures in partly shaded regions or woodland areas. T he plant got its name because Gold Rush miners ate it to stave off the scurvy – which is no wonder since 100 grams contains about one third of your daily requirement for vitamin C. It’s also a great detoxifier, helping cleanse the blood and lymph system.

Young Bittercress Leaves & Blossoms

And if you like arugula or watercress you’ll love bittercress ’s spicy bite. Right now the leaves are oh so tender, and like other plants in the Brassicaceae family, it’s likely bittercress is loaded with vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, beta carotene, antioxidants and sulfur-containing compounds that boost immunity and help in cancer prevention. Bittercress likes damp, recently disturbed and open spaces and is very common in gardens. When young it forms a little rosette of leaves and as it sprouts up it bears tiny white flowers (also delicious).

Crow Garlic or Allium vineale

And if you’re fond of garlic chives, well you must get acquainted with the oniony Crow Garlic or Allium vineale. Considered a tonic plant, studies have shown that Allium contains sulphur compounds (which give their oniony flavour) and act as a prebiotic encouraging the growth of gut friendly bacteria! Crow garlic is also found in many landscapes from lawns, fields, open woods and trailsides. Look for plants that resemble chives. They’re tall, spindly, with dark to bluish green leaves that are hollow inside. And you can’t mistake their oniony aroma!

I also tossed in a handful calendula petals for colour. Here in Victoria they practically bloom all year long, and while they don’t have much taste they’re loaded with nutrients as well. The flavonoids and carotenoids found in calendula (which give it’s bright orange hue) are plant-based antioxidants that help to neutralizes the free radicals. It’s also blood purifier, used to promote functioning and detoxification of the liver and gallbladder, and has been shown to be effective in soothing digestive problems. The Romans used calendula mixed with vinegar to season their meat and salad dishes.

You can use any wild greens really, I also like to add garlic mustard, chickweed or sheep or wood sorrel for their tangy flavour. And in early summer I will add the bright crimson flower head of sheep sorrel and the pink petals of wood sorrel blossoms. So use whatever’s handy, just go easy on stronger greens like dandelion which will add notes of bitter to your salad. Feel free to add some chopped cucumber too – I just didn’t have any on hand so they didn’t make it into this recipe!

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Winter Greens with Idiazabal Cheese

First, a couple of notes: Idiazabal is a raw sheep’s milk cheese from the Basque region of Northern Spain. It has a hard texture, but is buttery on the palate. The cheese carries a subtly smoky flavor not because it is a smoked cheese, but because it is aged in farmhouses with wood burning fireplaces.

The preserved Meyer lemons take a while. As in “at a minimum two weeks” a while. They are worth it though. It’s always a bonus to have around your fridge. They give an almost electric burst of brightness that cuts through rich flavors. Try food processing your favorite butter with them and brushing it over fish, chicken or even a ribeye steak!

• 5 meyer lemons, halved
• 1⁄2 cup salt
• 1⁄2 cup sugar

Cover lemons completely with salt/sugar mix and place tightly in an airtight container. Store in refrigerator for at least two weeks. When ready to use, rinse off excess cure and remove any seeds.

• 3 preserved lemon halves
• 1⁄2 cup rice wine vinegar
• 1 cup canola oil
• 1 clove garlic
• 1 small shallot
• 1⁄4 cup cold water

In a blender, combine all ingredients and puree until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.

For the salad:
• 1 bunch lacinato kale, stems removed and cut into 1 inch ribbons
• 1⁄2 cup marcona almonds
• Extra virgin olive oil
• 1 bulb fennel, core removed, thinly sliced
• 1 head radicchio, core removed and cut into 8ths
• 3 heads Belgian endive, cores removed and quartered
• 4 ounces Idiazabel cheese, cut into 1⁄2 ounce wedges
• 1⁄2 tablespoon fennel pollen for garnishing (Optional)
• 1⁄4 cup preserved meyer lemon vinaigrette (recipe above)
• Canola oil

Wash greens thoroughly and spin dry. In a food processor pulse almonds and one tablespoon olive oil to make a “crumble”. In a large mixing bowl, add about 1⁄4 cup of vinaigrette. Toss greens, fennel, radicchio and endive until well dressed season with kosher salt. Transfer salad evenly amongst four plates. Top each with two wedges of cheese and sprinkle with almond crumble. Garnish with a dusting of fennel pollen, if desired.

Adapted by Ribera y Rueda from James Flowers, Chef de Cuisine, Trio Restaurant at the Four Seasons Austin

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40 Ways You’ll Love Using Bitter Greens

Charity Burggraaf

Any green deemed “bitter” has some things working against it—the word itself doesn’t have the best connotations. But for those of us who live in a food bubble, the phrase “bitter greens” conjures up visions of satisfying salads, sharply flavored sautées, and vivid stews.

When you’re bored with kale or spinach just won’t cut it, an array of bitter leafy vegetables are waiting at your farmers’ market or supermarket shelves to sweep you off your feet. There’s watercress, which—no big deal—the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has deemed the world’s most nutrient-rich vegetable. And other powerhouse bitter greens like chicory, arugula, turnip greens, endive, mustard green, and dandelions fall close behind it in terms of healthiness. Bitter greens have also been reported to purify the blood, aid in weight reduction, cleanse skin, prevent anemia, and improve digestion, among other miraculous feats.

But the quality we love most is their ability to transform dishes and pack in flavor. Be it collards, escarole, puntarelle or frisee, their bold flavor can boost any salad from a pile of greens to a sophisticated dish—and a whole lot more. Use them to make ace frittatas, fill ravioli and stromboli too, top soup, garnish crostini, or perk up a pureed soup, smoothie, or dip for crudité.

The trick is knowing how to temper their sometimes spicy heat, or pair them with other ingredients to keep a dish balanced. Adding fat—in the form of good olive oil, bacon or prosciutto, or meaty drippings from a roast or sautée—can help tame their flavor, or rich foods like runny egg yolks, buttery doughs, or mild cheeses also work well. Salt and acids (like vinaigrettes, vinegars, or citrus juices) are two other important keys: Both can mellow the flavor of the greens and also brighten a dish, helping the brain register deliciousness and not just bitterness.

The proof is at the table. These 40 tried-and-true recipes and techniques for cooking with bitter greens will set you on a path to obsession:

Watercress with Spicy Chile and Sesame Vinaigrette

Watercress with Spicy Chile and Sesame Vinaigrette

“Creamed”Collard Greens with Peanut Butter and Chile

Greens laced with freshly ground peanut butter and fermented seafood for a funky umami kick is a common one-pot dish in West Africa. Get the recipe for “Creamed”Collard Greens with Peanut Butter and Chile »

Broccoli Rabe with Pine Nuts & Golden Raisins

Broccoli Rabe with Pine Nuts & Golden Raisins

Endive Salad with Bee Pollen Vinaigrette

A thick honey vinaigrette pairs with pleasingly bitter endives that are steamed, grilled, and marinated in this recipe from Castle Hill Inn in Newport, Rhode Island. Get the recipe for Endive Salad with Bee Pollen Vinaigrette »

Chicken and Broccoli Rabe Stromboli

Get the recipe for Chicken and Broccoli Rabe Stromboli

Puntarelle and Dandelion Green Salad with Honey and Olive Vinaigrette

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Biscuits with Pancetta, Collard Greens, Marbleized Eggs, and Espresso Aïoli

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Brazilian Beans with Smoked Pork, Rice and Collards (Feijoada)

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Braised Turnip Greens

There’s no shortage of greens you can cook, but the Memphis BBQ Company goes for turnips. The vegetables grow wild in the Mississippi Delta, and the greens can be cooked just like collards. Cube up the turnip roots for a full side dish. Get the recipe for Braised Turnip Greens »

Braised Collard Greens with Pickled Trotters

While you can use store-bought trotters in this dish, we pickled our own, which add a similar kick of acidity and deep hammy flavor. Get the recipe for Braised Collard Greens with Pickled Trotters »

Chicory and Herb Salad with Apple, Pomegranate, and Creamy Miso Dressing

Watercress Ricotta Torte

Watercress Ricotta Torte

Arugula and Cashew Pesto Salad

A chunky cashew pesto made with sharp, pungent Västerbotten cheese is tossed with chopped arugula to yield an unctuous salad with a robust umami flavor. Get the recipe for Arugula and Cashew Pesto Salad »

Seared Radicchio with Raisins and Shaved Parmigiano

This warm salad is made with a naturally sweet, high-quality balsamic vinegar to balance the bitterness of the leaves. If top-shelf balsamic vinegar di Modena is unavailable or out of your price range, cooking the grocery store version down by about one-third of its volume over a medium-low flame—and further sweetening it to taste with a drizzle of honey as needed—helps produce a similar level of sweetness.

Escarole Soup

Escarole lends sweet depth to this comforting soup from former Saveur executive editor Dana Bowen. Get the recipe for Escarole Soup »

Parmesan-Crusted Halibut with Broccoli Rabe and Mashed Potatoes

Parmesan-Crusted Halibut with Broccoli Rabe and Mashed Potatoes

Endive and Walnut Salad

With winter looming, this salad with endive, comte and walnuts is a great choice for cold weather. The recipe, adapted from Susan Herrmann Loomis’s The French Farmhouse Cookbook, is from a cook in the town of Vinay, where walnuts are produced. The crisp and bright salad is made heartier by the addition of nuts and cheese. Get the recipe for Endive and Walnut Salad »

Sausage and Arugula Pasta Salad

Pasta salads are essential summer food: they travel well they’re easy to adapt to whatever produce you have on-hand and they’re simple to make in large portions, making them perfect dishes to carry to parties, picnics, and barbecues. Get the recipe for Sausage and Arugula Pasta Salad »

Charred Escarole Salad

Creamy Watercress Dip

Creamy cottage cheese combines with watercress, lemon, chive, and parsley to make a bright dip for raw vegetables or chips. Get the recipe for Creamy Watercress Dip »

Tricolore Salad with Grapefruit Saba Vinaigrette

Grapefruit supremes (segments of pulp separated from the membrane) and aged balsamic vinegar brighten this classic Italian salad from author Dana Bowen. Get the recipe for Tricolore Salad with Grapefruit Saba Vinaigrette »

Salade Lyonnaise

Hailing from Lyon, this French bistro standard gathers a delectable trio of bitter frisée, runny poached egg, and crisp lardons. Get the recipe for Salade Lyonnaise »

Kohlrabi and Watercress Salad

For a twist on the classic Waldorf salad, try tossing sweet apples with crisp watercress and nutty kohlrabi in a sumac-infused yogurt dressing.

Softshell Crab Sandwich with Collard Slaw

A crisp collard slaw and tangy tartar and cocktail sauces top pan-fried softshell crabs in this classic sandwich. Get the recipe for Softshell Crab Sandwich with Collard Slaw »

Arugula, Radicchio, and Fennel Salad

Walnuts and parmesan add richness to this crunchy salad from The Yellow Table’s Anna Watson Carl. Get the recipe for Arugula, Radicchio, and Fennel Salad »

Escarole with Confit Duck Gizzards, Comté, and Walnuts

Winemakers Alice and Olivier de Moor use confit duck gizzards in this simple winter salad, but confit duck legs make a fine substitute. Get the recipe for Escarole with Confit Duck Gizzards, Comté, and Walnuts »

Dandelion Salad with Lardons

The salty richness of the lardons cuts through the crisp bitterness of the dandelion greens in this perfect spring salad. Get the recipe for Dandelion Salad with Lardons »

Thai Pomelo Salad (Dtam Som Oo)

Sweet pomelo pairs beautifully with chiles, peanuts, and mint in this recipe for a classic Thai salad from Talde in Brooklyn, New York. Get the recipe for Thai Pomelo Salad (Dtam Som Oo) »

Gulai Sayur (Indonesian-Style Collard Greens Curry)

Coconut milk balances the spicy notes of chile in this Indonesian-style curry with collard greens. Get the recipe for Gulai Sayur (Indonesian-Style Collard Greens Curry) »

Spaghettini with Carrots, Olives, and Red Endive

Carrot ribbons cooked al dente and lightly braised red endive add color to this simple vegetable-packed pasta dish, brightened with lots of lemon zest. Josita Hartanto of Berlin’s Lucky Leek uses multicolored carrots for a beautiful presentation. Get the recipe for Spaghettini with Carrots, Olives, and Red Endive »

Pepper Pot

Colonial Philadelphia, with its busy waterfront, was well influenced by trade from points south. Among the most famous Caribbean culinary imports was pepper pot. The rich, spicy stew of beef, pork, root vegetables, and greens became a staple in Philly, where West Indian hawkers advertised it with cries of “pepper pot, smoking hot!” Today, at City Tavern, a colonial-style saloon, this version is served. Get the recipe for Pepper Pot »

Shaved Cauliflower and Radicchio Salad

Aleppo pepper (a tangy Middle Eastern spice), raisins, and raw cauliflower marry in this simple yet unusual salad. Get the recipe for Shaved Cauliflower and Radicchio Salad »

Broccoli Rabe and Italian Sausage Fried Ravioli

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Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese

Slightly bitter rapini (also known as broccoli rabe) marries well with tangy goat cheese in a pasta recipe that’s ideal for summer picnics and potlucks. Get the recipe for Orecchiette with Rapini and Goat Cheese »

Ramp and Wild Greens Pesto

Fermentation revivalist Sandor Katz makes this punchy pesto to capture the essence of spring. Chickweed, a spicy herb, is his green of choice to pair with ramps, to which he adds mild herbs and sunflower seeds, but you can replace chickweed with watercress, arugula, or any other peppery green. The same goes for the ramps—this pesto works just as well with spring onions or garlic. It will keep in the fridge for a few weeks, and Katz uses it throughout the day: on grits or eggs for breakfast, slathered on sandwiches for lunch, and tossed with potatoes or pasta for dinner. Get the recipe for Ramp and Wild Greens Pesto »

Garlicky Skillet Greens with Ham

Garlic confit, a silky, spreadable condiment, relies on a French technique for gently poaching peeled whole cloves in oil or fat. The process caramelizes the cloves and draws out their sweetness, yielding a sumptuous spread. We love to use it in dishes like these skillet-cooked greens from Linton Hopkins, chef and owner of Restaurant Eugene in Atlanta, which feature garlic confit and a piquant sorghum gastrique. Get the recipe for Garlicky Skillet Greens with Ham »

Sautéed Crab with Avocado, Grapefruit and Herb Salad

Crabmeat is rubbed with a smoky chile paste, then sautéed and tossed in a refreshing salad of creamy avocado, tart grapefruit, and herbs. Get the recipe for Sautéed Crab with Avocado, Grapefruit and Herb Salad »

Cooked and Raw Winter Salad

Bacon, parmesan, and pine nuts combine with a medley of cooked and raw vegetables to make a satisfying salad from The Canal House’s Christopher Hirsheimer. Get the recipe for Cooked and Raw Winter Salad »

Chicory in Anchovy Sauce

Tossed with a garlicky anchovy dressing, this vegetable dish is a great foil for rich pastas and roasted meats. Get the recipe for Chicory in Anchovy Sauce »

Salads are not just some iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and a sliced radish covered with thick dressing anymore. There is a whole new world out there with fruits, vegetables, nuts and even proteins like chicken or shrimp that can top the old classic mixed greens.

In her book, "Orange Appeal: Savory and Sweet" ($24.99, Gibbs Smith), author Jamie Schler writes about bright and zesty salad dressing using oranges as the foundation. Her love of the orange is reflected in three lively vinaigrettes that are perfect for a happy pick-me-up on gray days.

You'll find each dressing recipe is followed by delectable serving suggestions. Her first vinaigrette uses rosemary and thyme to heighten the orange-flavored dressing. In her second recipe she suggests a blend of orange juice along with Dijon-style mustard and a fruit vinegar that pairs well with bitter greens and roasted beets. Her last vinaigrette relies on the blood orange, a delightfully complex bitter-sweet orange flavor, along with a surprise ingredient: hummus. The hummus acts as a thickener as well as a complementary flavor to the blood orange taste. It is also good on roasted or grilled eggplant.

Have fun experimenting with these Seriously Simple vinaigrettes with different greens, fruits and vegetables. Hopefully it will brighten up the gray, cloudy skies this season.

Rosemary Orange Vinaigrette

Makes 1/2 to 3/4 cup (125 mL to 185 mL)

1/4 cup (65 mL) orange juice

2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves only, finely chopped

1 to 2 sprigs fresh thyme or lemon thyme, leaves and flowers only, chopped

Three Sisters Dish

The benefits of an Indigenous Mesoamerican Three Sisters garden (that's corn, beans, and winter squash) go beyond supplying a powerhouse trio of nutritional ingredients. (Though it's worth noting that they supply complex carbohydrates, essential fatty acids, and complimentary amino acids that amount to a complete protein. 😮)

These gardens also exemplify the genius of companion planting&mdashi.e. planting different crops near each other so they work together to improve each other's growth, and the health of the soil they are planted in. Corn stalks act as stakes for climbing bean plants, which in tern stabilize the stalks and enrich the soil them with nitrogen. Squash plants, with their spiny stems and low canopy of leaves, discourage hungry four-legged pests and help the soil below maintain moisture.

Though this efficient farming system was pioneered hundreds of years ago, this classic trio never goes out of style. Here Brian Yazzie brings them together as a hearty side dish or vegetarian entrée.

Hearty Lentil and Potato Soup with Leafy Greens

Published: Oct 29, 2013 · Updated: Mar 4, 2021 by Nicole @ VegKitchen · This post may contain affiliate links.

This satisfying soup features lentils, potatoes (and optional sweet potatoes) and greens, a trio of compatible ingredients in a mildly curried broth. This is a wonderful soup to come home to on a cold late fall or winter day, so make it on a quiet Sunday and enjoy it when you come home from work the next day. It’s also a good choice to pack in a Thermos, to take to work or school.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup raw brown or green lentils, rinsed
  • 1 large celery stalk, diced
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 large potatoes, scrubbed and diced (or use 1 large potato and 1 medium-large sweet potato)
  • 15- to 16-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained (try fire-roasted for extra flavor)
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons good-quality curry powder, or more, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon salt-free seasoning blend (like Frontier or Mrs. Dash)
  • 6 to 8 ounces leafy greens, washed, stemmed, and chopped (use chard, kale, collard greens, spinach, or arugula — or a combination of whatever you have on hand)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro, optional
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until both are golden.

Add the lentils, celery, garlic, and water. Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes.

Add the potatoes, tomatoes, and curry powder, and seasoning blend, and simmer gently until the potatoes and lentils are tender, about 20 to 30 minutes longer.

Stir in the greens, cilantro, and lemon juice. Adjust the consistency with more water as needed, then season with salt and pepper. Simmer over very low heat for another 5 minutes. Serve at once or if time allows, let stand off the heat for an hour or so, then heat through before serving.

Butternut Squash, Apple, and Ginger Soup

This warm, grounding soup has a blend of winter spices, as well as ginger, to provide an anti-inflammatory boost.

  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 large carrot, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped, with seeds removed, or 6-8 cups of pre-cut butternut squash
  • 1 medium green apple, peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 3 cups organic chicken stock (low-sodium) or vegetable stock
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger (add more to taste)
  • 1½ teaspoons sea salt, divided
  • ½ teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • 10 chives, chopped

Heat a large soup pot on medium-high heat. Melt the coconut oil in the pot, then add onion, carrot, and celery with ½ teaspoon sea salt. Sauté for 5 minutes or until onions are translucent.

Add squash and green apple to the pot, then sauté for 5 minutes. Add the broth and water, then bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and simmer for another 30 minutes until the squash is softened.

Puree the soup in batches in a blender. Make sure not to fill the blender more than halfway when adding the soup. Transfer the soup back into the pot and add nutmeg, cinnamon, cayenne, ginger, and 1 teaspoon sea salt and pepper. Stir to combine, then taste to adjust seasoning if necessary. (Note: Alternatively, you can use an immersion blender.)

This recipe was inspired and adapted from

Cooking the Magazines: Wilted Greens and Sweet Potato Winter Salad

Natalie McLaury considers herself a bit of a hoarder when it comes to magazines. Never one to pass up a good deal on a subscription, it’s to the point where she now finds herself receiving a magazine in the mail several times a week. Most of the time, she rips out pages of recipes but fails to actually create the recipe in her kitchen. Not anymore! Join Natalie as she cooks the magazines.
By Natalie McLaury

I was flipping through the Epicurious app on my phone when this recipe caught my eye. Admittedly, it was the word “kale” that grabbed my attention. Regular readers of this blog know I love the superfood! I set out to make it that weekend, but ended up putting my own spin on the recipe. Sweet potatoes instead of regular and collard greens instead of kale (the horror! Our grocery store was out!).

I wasn’t quite sure how the different elements would work together, particularly the lemon tahini dressing. The finished product proved me wrong. I loved the slivers of roasted garlic, the Parmesan-crusted potatoes, and the earthiness of the greens. I will say if you aren’t a huge tahini fan you may not like this because its flavor is pretty prominent in the dressing (though you could also add extra lemon).

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Worried about that whole jar of tahini you’d have to buy to make this salad? You can also use it in sweet potato butter, warm butternut squash and chickpea salad, and edamame hummus (or any of your favorite hummus recipes).

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