Collard greens are popular in the southern United States, and for good reason: They go beautifully with barbecue and other hearty Southern staples. Cooked down, collard leaves get wonderfully silky, and take as well to a braise as they do to a simple saute.
There are a couple varieties of mustard greens, and yes, some are related to the seeds used to make a well known, zippy yellow condiment. Curly leafed mustard greens are more common to grocery stores in the United States, and you’ll recognize them by their frilly edges. They carry some of the bite you know from mustard. Food writer Julia Turshen likes to blanch them, “taming their bite and also making the large bunches more manageable.”
Oh yes, kale. You’ll most likely find green curly kale and its darker hued, flatter-leafed and less bitter cousin, lacinato kale, at the grocery store. And no matter where you are, you’ll find someone who hates the stuff. We believe there are kale recipes — raw or cooked — out there that even haters could get behind.
Light green and pine cone-shaped, endive makes pretty, crunchy and edible “canoes.” That crunch is best harnessed raw in salads and snacks — you can tuck a filling of your choice into the leaves. I think their bitterness is best complemented with bright, juicy fruit such as oranges, grapes, apples and the like.
Mediterranean Crunch Salad. Pile up chickpeas, cheese, peppers and more into endives, then scoop up for a tasty and light — but filling — meal.
You may be familiar with arugula’s sharp, peppery bite in salads where it works in tandem with a host of other flavors, depending on the type of salad. Arugula can be eaten fresh, wilted or even blended into a pesto.
Swiss chard is related to beets, and you might notice a similar earthiness in both. Separate, chop and cook the stems before the leaves. Cooking will pull the bitterness out and leave chard tasting more like spinach.