As a green leafy vegetable, collard greens are among the best available for your health. They’re actually a member of the cruciferous family, along with broccoli and cabbage, and as such they’re packed with vitamin C, soluble fiber, and numerous cancer-fighting phytonutrients.
Collards are available year round, but they are actually tastier and more nutritious in the cold months, after the first frost. For the best texture, they should be picked before they reach their full maturity.
Popular in southern cooking, they are usually stewed with meat for a long period of time, losing much of the nutritional benefit, but there’s many healthier ways to incorporate them into your diet. They hold up to cooking much better than other greens, so they can be added toward the end of preparing soups and stews and still keep their texture. Sliced thinly, they can be lightly steamed and tossed with a vinegar dressing. Steamed whole, they are strong enough to be used as wraps for a burrito alternative.
It’s summertime. Time to light up the grill. Yes, there are endless possibilities for grilling without using meat or fish. This wonderful cookbook from the Book Publishing Company captures a wide variety of possibilities in one easy-to-use book.
Grills Gone Vegan is the latest cookbook from Tamasin Noyes. Tamasin has been vegetarian for over thirty years, and vegan for much of that time. She and her husband, Jim, live in northeastern Ohio with their two cats. Along the way, Tamasin has baked for a vegan café, worked in restaurants, created a nonprofit group that sent handmade cards to children with life-threatening illnesses, and had a vegan soap company for ten years.
Passionate about cooking, Tamasin spent several years as a cookbook tester for some of the leading vegan authors. She is also the author of American Vegan Kitchen and the coauthor of Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day.
Here’s a sample recipe:
Portobello Burgers with Mango Chutney Marinade
Yield: 4 sandwiches • Advance prep: Marinate the mushrooms for 1 hour.
¼ cup mango chutney
2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
2 teaspoons hot sauce
1 cup salt-free vegetable broth
¼ cup mango chutney
2 tablespoons minced red onion
1 tablespoon reduced-sodium tamari
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
½ teaspoon ground white pepper
Pinch red pepper flakes
4 portobello mushrooms, stems and gills removed
4 burger buns, split and grilled if desired
Sliced red onions
Sliced dill pickles
To make the sauce, put all the ingredients in a small blender and process until smooth. The sauce can be used immediately or may be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
To prepare the mushrooms, put the broth, chutney, onion, tamari, vinegar, garlic, coriander, oil, white pepper, and red pepper flakes in a small saucepan and stir to combine. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Decrease the heat to low and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.
Put the mushrooms in a 13 x 9-inch nonreactive baking pan stem-side up. Pour the chutney mixture evenly over the mushrooms and let marinate at room temperature for 1 hour.
Preheat a grill, grill pan, or electric grill to medium-high heat.
Lightly oil the grill with canola oil. Put the mushrooms on the grill stem-side up, reserving the marinade. Cook until marked, about 5 minutes, occasionally basting with the marinade. Turn over and cook in the same fashion until the other side is marked and the flesh is soft and tender in the center, about 5 minutes. (If using an electric grill, keep it open and cook a few minutes longer if necessary.)
To assemble the burgers, spread the sauce evenly on the cut sides of the buns. Put the mushrooms on the bottom halves of the buns. Cover with the onions, pickles, and top halves of the buns.