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A Guide to Leafy Greens

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Arugula FLAVOR: Bitter and peppery.
USES: Fresh in salads or sandwiches, add to soups, or sauté for vegetable dishes.
Kale FLAVOR: Mildly peppery. Cabbage-like.
USES: Remove rough stems and ribs. Steam, sauté, boil, or add small amount to salads. Beautiful as a garnish.
Belgian Endive FLAVOR: Hint of bitterness. Red variety slightly more
bitter than green.
USES: Leaves are perfectly shaped to hold spreads for appetizers, or add fresh in salads.
Leaf Lettuce FLAVOR: Mild, yet more full-flavored than head lettuce.
USES: Fresh in salads or sandwiches.
FLAVOR: Sweet and succulent.
USES: Fresh in lettuce wraps or salads.
Mustard Greens FLAVOR: Sharp and peppery. Radish-like.
USES: Steam, sauté, or simmer as a side vegetable.
FLAVOR: Slightly bitter. Cook briefly for milder flavor.
USES: Fresh in salads or add to side dishes.
(also known as red chicory)
FLAVOR: Bittersweet.
USES: Fresh in salads, grill, sauté, or bake.
FLAVOR: Mild and slightly stronger than cabbage.
USES: Steam or sauté to tenderize leaves. Southern style of cooking the greens is to boil with bacon or salt pork.
Romaine Lettuce FLAVOR: Slightly bitter.
USES: Adds crunch to mixed green salads, and is typically the lettuce used for Caesar salad.
Dandelion Greens FLAVOR: Slightly
bitter and tangy.
USES: Cook like spinach or add small amount to salads.
Spinach FLAVOR: Slightly bitter. For sweeter, milder taste use baby spinach.
USES: Fresh in salads or sandwiches, sauté, or add to soups and pastas.
Escarole FLAVOR: Similar to curly endive with milder flavor.
USES: Primarily used fresh in salads. Can also steam or add to soups.
Swiss Chard FLAVOR: Mild and sweet.
USES: Prepare greens similar to spinach. Prepare stalks similar to asparagus.
Frisée FLAVOR: Nice balance of bitter and sweet.
USES: Fresh in mixed green salads.
Watercress FLAVOR: Slightly bitter with a peppery snap.
USES: Fresh in salads or added to soups and side dishes. Also popular as a garnish.

SOURCE: Lunds and Byerly's Culinary Experts - Real Food Magazine - Spring 2010