Sunday, July 20, 2014

A way to use up those CSA greens

As a member (and employee) of the Wickham Farms CSA program, I get lots of greens – sometimes by themselves, as in kale, spinach and collard greens, other times attached to root vegetables like beets and turnips. They are great in that they are packed with nutrients, are high in dietary fiber and are low in calories. The trouble with them, though, is that they have strong flavors that can be hard to work with.

Here’s a delicious recipe to use up a lot of those greens. The Cheddar cheese has enough flavor to stand up to the strong flavors of the greens. Plus it’s versatile: serve it warm or at room temperature, for brunch or for an appetizer.

Greens and Cheddar Squares


2 tablespoons butter, divided
1 ½ pounds beet greens, Swiss chard, mature spinach, Tuscan kale, turnip greens, mustard greens, bok choy, or a mixture, washed well and thick stems removed (reserve the edible stems of the bok choy and Swiss chard for another purpose)
3 eggs
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus additional salt & pepper
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup chopped spring onion, about 2 medium (scallions may be substituted)
1 pound sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
Cooking spray

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat 1 Tablespoon butter until melted. Add half of the greens, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until greens wilt, about 3-5 minutes. Repeat with the remaining greens. (If you are using different kinds of greens, you may want to sauté separately as they cook at slightly different rates.) Drain the greens, pressing on leaves to extract as much water as possible. Let cool a bit.

Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, beat eggs; add flour, milk, salt and baking powder and mix well. Stir in onion and cheese.

When greens are cool enough to handle, mass them on the cutting board and chop finely. Stir greens into the egg mixture.

Spray a 9- by 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Pour greens mixture into pan and bake for 35-40 minutes, until top is golden brown.

Cool thoroughly; they will be gooey when they come out of the oven, but will set up as they cool. Cut into squares or triangles. Makes 48 pieces.

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