Tracy Lee Karner
The Way I Was

Turnip Greens are Packed with Nutrients

Tracy Lee Karner
1 pound of greens feeds 2-3 people

Vitamin A, Calcium, Vitamin C and Iron, antioxidants, even a healthy dose of protein. This little leaf is a powerhouse of nutrition. If you can’t get to the Kleer-vu Lunchroom in Murfreesboro, Tennessee to sample the best turnip greens in town, you can easily cook up a pot at home. I love the taste of them when they’re done this way–

Ingredients for 1 pound of turnip greens (makes 2-3 servings). For every pound, I use

  • 1 teaspoon bacon fat, or good pork lard **
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon malt vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon molasses
  • 3/4 teaspoon chicken base (a concentrated chicken stock. “Better than Bouillon” is the brand I like)
Tracy Lee Karner
Whack off and discard the end of the thick stalks of the greens.
Tracy Lee Karner
Float the greens in a large bowl of water, and swish them around. Let the dirt/sand settle to the bottom of the bowl.
Tracy Lee Karner
Stir together malt vinegar & molasses, add chicken base and stir to dissolve.

Now, scoop the greens out of the water and set them aside, with water still clinging to the leaves. Don’t dump them into a colander, the sand has settled to the bottom of the bowl, and you’ll just end up with sand all over your greens again. Pour the water out of the bowl, rinse the sand away, then return the greens to the bowl, with water still clinging to them.

Tracy Lee Karner
Over medium heat, melt a smidgeon of fat, add minced garlic and the vinegar-molassess-chicken base blend.

** I don’t always shun bacon grease and pork fat. I’m not afraid of anything that’s honestly food. A little fat (and 1 teaspoon divided between three servings really is a very little bit!) goes a long way in boosting flavor. Lard doesn’t scare me nearly as much as Polyricinoleic acid, added to manufactured chocolate bars, and propylene glycol, added to manufactured salad dressings.

Tracy Lee Karner
Add about 1/3 of the greens to the kettle, stir to coat with seasonings and cook down (over medium heat) for a few minutes–it’s as if they melt. Add the next third… stir and cook down…
Tracy Lee Karner
And add the last third, keep stirring. There will be enough water clinging to the greens, you won’t have to add any more water to the pot unless you want soupier pot liquor.
Tracy Lee Karner
Cover and simmer over medium-low heat for 45 minutes or an hour, until the stems are completely tender.
Tracy Lee Karner
The greens cook WAY down and get meltingly tender. Be sure to sop up the pot liquor because that’s where most of the vitamins are hiding after a long simmer.
Tracy Lee Karner
I like to spice up my greens with a dash of hot sauce. Or a grind of fresh black pepper.

It’s a pleasure to eat your greens when they taste this good!

The problem with blogging about food, is it makes me hungry. But I don’t have to feel guilty about going back in the kitchen to whip up another pot of turnip greens right now. At 75 calories per cup (and that includes the fat & molasses), I can indulge my craving for turnip greens.

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