Tender, young mustard greens and turnip greens are quick-cooked in just a little broth with onions and tossed with ginger and dried cranberries.
On this day in 2006, I decided to start a blog. At the time, I barely new what a blog was, but it seemed like a way to personalize my website, so I decided to give it a try. I had no idea that simply recording what I was cooking would very quickly evolve into creating and sharing my own recipes or that snapping quick photos at the dinner table with my point-and-shoot would eventually lead to a dining room filled with photography equipment and “props” (formerly known as dishes).
I’ve written three anniversary posts now (years one, two, and three are in the archives, but I somehow missed last year), and it feels like I’ve said everything there is to say about the occasion, but one thing bears repeating: Without you readers, this blog would not exist.
Knowing that there are people out there reading what I write, cooking what I cook, and being (I hope) entertained by the photos that I take has made me strive to be a better writer, recipe developer, and photographer. I never cease to be educated and inspired by your comments and emails, and I know that recipes aren’t created in a vacuum: It takes a village to raise a mini tofu quiche, in all its myriad variations. So thank you all. I really couldn’t do it without you–and wouldn’t want to.
As a token of my thanks, I offer you this bouquet of red mustard greens that I bought last week at Rainbow, the natural food co-op here in Jackson. Todd in the produce department graciously answered my “What the heck is this?” with information on both the greens and their grower, a local tomato farmer who is growing several varieties of greens for the winter. Todd advised cooking the mustard greens with turnip greens, to balance out their peppery bite, so I bought a bunch of each. Some of the turnip greens even had tiny turnips attached:
Traditionally, Southerners cook greens by simmering them in ham-seasoned water until very tender, often an hour or more, and with older greens, I do a similar, vegan version using caramelized onions and hickory salt to get the smokey seasoning without harming a pig.
But these mustard and turnip greens were young, very tender, and thin-stemmed, so I opted for quick-cooking them in just a little broth. I cut the tiny turnips into slivers and added them to the skillet with the onions and tossed in a little ginger for fragrance and bite. But the real excitement is provided by the handful of dried cranberries I added to the greens just before serving. Their sweet and tangy flavor complemented the peppery greens just perfectly. This Southerner, at least, has a new favorite way to prepare vegan greens.
New Southern Greens
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth (I used Imagine’s No-Chicken broth)
- 1/2 small red onion , thinly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 1/2 tablespoon minced ginger root
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 10 ounces greens (about 2 small bunches mustard, turnip, or collard greens), stemmed and chopped*
- 1 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- Prepare your vegetables beforehand because this recipe moves fast. Wash greens well, remove and discard large stems, and coarsely chop leaves.
- Heat a large, deep non-stick skillet. Add 2 tablespoons of the vegetable broth and the onions. Cook until onions soften, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and another splash of broth, if needed. Cook for another 2 minutes.
- Add 1/4 cup of broth and stir in the paprika. Add the greens and stir quickly before covering tightly. Cook until greens wilt but retain their vivid color, stirring and adding more broth as needed to keep them moist. Stir in the vinegar, cranberries, and salt to taste. Serve hot.
Nutritional info is approximate.
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Jennifer HJanuary 12, 2011 at 5:55 pm
I am really excited to find your site and especially the recent post on top vegan recipes.
JJanuary 14, 2011 at 11:16 am
You know, I think you’re blog coincided with me turning vegan, because I remember around the time looked up fat free vegan recipes and there you were, ‘Fat Free Vegan Kitchen’, I just assumed you had always been online way before that! I’ve tried lots of your recipes over the years and every time I make something from here I always get rave reviews – keep up the amazing work!
AngelaJanuary 15, 2011 at 1:38 am
I understand now how you feel after you have created something soo awesome and healthy too! I have played around today and created “cajun burgerz”.. I am soo proud of myself! lol… I enjoy your recipes and they inspired me to try and create my own! thank you
EricJanuary 15, 2011 at 9:10 am
Running a blog for five years takes dedication. Congrats and here’s hoping you have many, many more years of blog success!
RunLongerJanuary 16, 2011 at 6:58 pm
So pretty! I love the picture of the final product! And Happy Anniversary to you. Your blog (and Web site) have been the source of many great dinners in our house for several years now; it’s the first place I check when I’ve bought a vegetable I don’t cook with often. I think, “Hmmm, I wonder what Susan’s done with this.” And you almost always have an answer. Thanks!
AliciaJanuary 17, 2011 at 10:33 pm
Happy Blog Anniversary! Thank you for all your delicious recipes and inspiring blog posts. Your Mexican Lasagna was one of the first vegan recipes I tried and it’s still a favorite of mine 🙂
VirginieJanuary 18, 2011 at 4:13 pm
Happy anniversary to your blog !
JJJanuary 19, 2011 at 5:25 am
Just wanted to say BIG THANKS for the hard work on your blog. Recently found it and am also recently following a nearly-vegan diet. You and your site are a tremendous resource!!
DryerJanuary 26, 2011 at 3:57 pm
Vegetable is always my diet, only the green colour make me want to eat it.
DianeFebruary 1, 2011 at 11:43 am
Susan, I found you through Eat To Live, but continue to follow your blog because of your creative talent in the kitchen and the dining room! (your photography studio!) Congratulations to you for producing a high quality blog that keeps getting better every year. ‘The best to you and your family –
SusanVFebruary 1, 2011 at 11:47 am
Thank you, Diane!
AnnaFebruary 7, 2011 at 7:51 pm
I just found your blog (searching for wheat free vegan cookies) and have spent the last half hour looking through all your recipes – they look SO delicious – I can’t wait to try!
Get Skinny, Go Vegan.March 1, 2011 at 2:22 pm
Thanks for bring us all of these “real food” recipes!
Christopher KandratMarch 7, 2011 at 8:58 pm
Awesome southern style recipe.
Nancy MullerNovember 24, 2011 at 11:09 am
I just tried this recipe, and it is as good as southern greens with ham hocks — the smoked paprika was inspired. I have missed old fashioned greens, and this is the first recipe to give me a BETTER alternative. Each bite provides me with a depth of flavor that I just couldn’t figure out when I tried other options. On this Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for your website and willingness to share your recipes. Lovely!
LaurenJanuary 12, 2012 at 10:33 am
These greens look delish! Happy blog anniversary-your blog was the first one I stumbled upon on my journey to veganism, so I thank you for your inspiration. I celebrated my 3 year vegan anniversary in December. 🙂 Keep up the great work!
Sue bakerMarch 24, 2012 at 5:09 pm
This is absolutely delicious! I used kale and red chard but otherwise followed the recipe. We give it 6 stars out of 5.
janet @ the taste spaceMarch 2, 2013 at 5:36 pm
Not sure where I went wrong, Susan, but this is probably my first flop from your site. I didn’t think the ginger worked too well with the greens along with the smoked paprika. I added a lot more balsamic and ended up cooking the collard greens a lot longer because they were too bitter for my liking. Added black eyed peas to make a complete meal. Next time, I may use oil to get more flavour from the onions.
Suzanne N.December 8, 2013 at 4:24 pm
Hi Susan, I come to you from HealthyGirlsKitchen. I’m always looking for a good, easy greens recipe, and this offering of yours deliciously fills the bill. I subbed 2 bags of TJ’s Power Greens (young kale, chard & spinach) and it’s now in my regular rotation. Thank you!