From the AICR Test Kitchen
Week of September 6, 2010
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Contact: Alice Bender, (202) 328-7744

Great Greens

from the
American Institute for Cancer Research

As summer vacations become warm memories, kids head back to school and schedules become more hectic, it’s time to return to basics without sacrificing taste or nutrition. Hearty and healthy, collard greens can help you do just that while expanding your home menu to include a wonderful taste of southern cooking.

A member of the cabbage family, collards are nutritional superstars: they are low in calories, have no fat and are rich in vitamins C, A and K, as well as manganese and folate, a B vitamin. These mighty greens were eaten by the ancient Greeks, and it is widely believed that the Romans or the Celts introduced collards to France and Britain in the 4th century BC. By the 1600s they were being cultivated in the Americas.

Collard greens can become too bitter with time and should be used within 5 days of purchase. Wrap unwashed leaves in damp paper towels and place in a resealable plastic bag in the crisper section of the refrigerator.

For this dish, the bell pepper provides a splash of color and the mushrooms add to the pleasant consistency of the dish. The cider vinegar complements the slight bitterness of the collards, and the dark brown sugar balances the dish with a bit of sweetness. Slowly simmering collards in broth renders them tender and allows them to absorb the flavors of the other ingredients.

Make some extra greens and refrigerate them for convenient leftovers. These collard greens can be a great side dish for a soup and sandwich lunch or for a light dinner.


Great Greens

  • 1 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 medium-size red onion, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, julienne cut
  • 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1/3 cup low-sodium vegetable broth (chicken broth may be substituted)
  • 3/4 lbs. fresh collard greens, washed, thick stems removed and chopped (about 4 cups packed)
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. dried crushed red pepper, or to taste
  • Salt to taste

In large pot heat oil over medium-high heat. Sauté onion and bell pepper 4 minutes. Add mushrooms and continue to sauté mixture for another 4 to 6 minutes or until tender.

Add broth, then greens and remaining ingredients. Cook over medium-low heat until greens are just tender, about 15 minutes.

Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 60 calories, 3.5g total fat (0g saturated fat), 6 g carbohydrate,
1g protein, 2g dietary fiber, 20 mg sodium.

Our Mission: The American Institute for Cancer Research champions the latest and most authoritative scientific research from around the world on cancer prevention and survival through diet, weight and physical activity, so that we can help people make informed lifestyle choices to reduce their cancer risk.

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