Archives for the day Sunday, December 29th, 2013

People food for thought Part 22;Collard Green

 In the previous entry titled “People food for thought Part XXV:Color of vegetables/fruits and health benefit“, I wrote that according to the
article written by Mary Squillace, registered dietitian Vandana Sheth
for academy of nutrition and dietetics has mentioned that we get
different nutrients from different foods and eating variety of foods in
different colors is easiest ways to ensure we are getting full range of

 Among them, as for color “Green”,according
to research done in 2011 published in Cell, Emerald color in the
vegetables such as broccoli,bok choy (cruciferous family vegetables)
will help you support immune system.

 Protein in those vegetables helps immune cells that line and protect the gut and the skin function properly.

 With green color vegetables, darker the color is, the better nutrient you will get.

 As examples, Spinach,Kale,Collard green were listed there.

 In this entry, I would like to focus on the Collard Green and its health benefit.

 I notice that recent years, many green vegetables base snack such as kale chips seems to be big among celebrities and I see many talking about them on TV shows.

 I personally never had collard green yet, but I have eaten kale many times. I like using them in the stew, soup,stir fry type of dishes,fried rice and I also like to use in the tomato base side dish.

Collard green;the nutritious gem..

 According to the article written by registered dietitian “Jennifer Motl”, Collard Green are very rich in nutrient that protect eyesight,as well as reducing cholesterol level, and risk of cancer.

 They are rich in antioxidants such as “carotenoids”,”lutein”, and “zeaxanthin” that reduce the eye disease called age related macular degeneration.

 The research done by UCLA, when you compare who ate collard green at least once a week vs people who did not eat collard green showed that the people who ate the collard green at least once a week cut their risk of cancer (glaucoma)  by 57%.

 Jennifer writes that frost makes the flavor sweeten, spring is usually the good time to taste the green without tasting much bitterness.

 When you look into vitamins/minerals 1/2 cup of cooked collard green can offer,she states that it has 150% of daily value of Vitamin A,29% of Vitamin C, 500% of vitamin K,22% of folate, 13% calcium, daily value.

How to cook the green..

 Jennifer mentions that traditionally, collard green are cooked for a couple of hours in broth and ham hocks or bacon in southern cooking.Then, vinegar is added and served with cornbread.

 However, she states it is not only time consuming but it is high in sodium.

 Here are some of my favorite ways to enjoy many leafy green vegetables.

 The first dish’s idea is based on “Latatouille”, but cooked in the skillet to cook up the quick delicious sides.

 I like to use many vegetables such as squash,zucchini,garbanzo beans, tomatoes, green like spinach,kale etc.. I have not tried this with Collard green but I think it would go well with this dish too.

 I did not have Ratatouille dish picture on its own,but I had the picture from the time I made spicy garbanzo bean with bits of hot Italian sausage without other vegetables. How they are made is almost the same.

 It just did not have vegetables and instead it got spicy hot Italian sausage in it. But you can see what it would look like when it is done.

Yassy’s Quick Ratatouille

Ingredients for Yassy’s Quick Ratatouille:

1/2 zucchini 1/2″ thick bite size pieces
1 clove garlic chopped
1/2 can (14 oz can) garbanzo bean drained
Morton’s natures seasons
1/4C Red port wine
Extra virgin olive oil
1C-1,5C crushed tomato
1 tbs white sugar
dash of dried oregano
handful of green chopped
chopped fresh basil leaves

1. In the skillet, drizzle extra virgin olive oil

2. Chop 1 clove of garlic and add it to the skillet and let it come to fragrant

** If you like spicier Ratatouille, after garlic is added to the skillet,add hot Italian sausage removed from the casing, small bits each onto the skillet.It will add the zing to the dish

3. To that, add 1/2 zucchini chopped to 1/2″ thick bite size pieces, half the can of garbanzo bean drained, and season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons and stir

4. When zucchini started to soften, add 1/4C red port wine and stir

5. Add 1C to 1.5C crushed tomato sauce and add 1 tbs or so of white sugar to balance out the acidity to your taste.

6. Season it with dried oregano and stir

7. Add chopped green such as kale, collard green,or spinach,stir and turn down the heat to simmer and let it cook through

8. Serve it on the plate and sprinkle chopped fresh basil and a dash of ground Parmesan cheese

** I find that you can make a little big batch of this and plate it on the plate and top it with seared scallops to serve is also good one to enjoy scallops and various vegetables.

 My husband is not a big fan of zucchini but when I cook this way,he eats it fine.

 Besides this, very quick way to make sides using only green is that, boil them in the water,squeeze out as much water as possible and then either add that to scramble egg, or simply add dash of soy sauce and garnish with toasted sesame seed and serve it with hot steamy rice.

 The second one that are not so obvious way to cook the green in the dish is to use the leafy gree vegetables in the fried rice.

 You can include many vegetables that you have in your fridge,and they are quick and easy versatile dish and you can play it around with it.

 Here is my Fried rice just made this week using bok choy.As noted above bok choy is also nutritious leafy green vegetables and you can use it in other than noodle dish or stir fry Chinese dishes.

 Of course, you can add in leftover chopped ribs or ground beef or cut up chicken tender etc.. You can make your own Fried rice the way you like it

Vegetable Fried rice..

Ingredients for Vegetable Fried rice;

sweet onion chopped
about 8 strings of green beans chopped fine into 1/4″
1/8 red pepper
1/8 green pepper chopped
1 bok choy 2 stem parts chopped fine
and all the leaves chopped rough
1/2 vine tomato seed removed,chopped

Extra virgin olive oil
Morton’s Natures Seasons
2 eggs
18 oz cooked white rice
2 capful of sake
Kikkoman Extra Fancy Soy sauce (Not the soy sauce made in USA,but imported from Japan)
Sesame oil

<Vegetable fried rice>

To the skillet, drizzle Extra virgin Olive Oil, and when it gets heated
up, add 1/2 sweet onion chopped, about 8 strings of green beans chopped fine into 1/4″ pieces, 1/8 red pepper
chopped, 1/8 green pepper chopped, 1 bok choy 2 stem parts chopped fine and all the leaves chopped rough, 1/2 vine tomato seed removed,chopped and stir.

2. Season it with Morton’s Natures Seasons,and when onions gets translucent, and other vegetables in the skillet got soften up, add 1/16C of whole corn kernels, and stir

3. Make the empty space in the center of the skillet by moving all the vegetables to the side of the skillet and crack 2 eggs in the skillet and poke the yolk and stir the eggs and make the scramble egg in the center of the skillet

4. When eggs are cooked to not runny but nice scramble egg texture, stir it with vegetables and add cooked white rice*
(18 oz ), and break the rice down with wooden spoon and cook the
rice,vegetables and eggs.

** I recommend Kokuho rose rice

5. When you see no big lumps of rice in
the skillet and mixed well with vegetables and eggs, add about 2 capful of sake* and stir

** Recommend Gekkeikan brand sake.You can find it at local grocery store’s prepared sushi section.

6. Pour bit of soy sauce at a time to your taste and stir and taste it.

** For the great tasting fried rice.Good soy sauce is the key to the dish.

Use the Extra Fancy Whole Bean Soy sauce by Kikkoman Japan, imported from Japan if you can get them at your local Asian store.

The soy sauce I use is called ” Extra fancy whole bean soy sauce” from Kikkoman Japan:it is imported from Japan and is sold at Asian stores. It is big plastic bottle. You can see the soy sauce I use in the picture below.

This is made from GMO free soy.

Extra Fancy Whole bean soy sauce from Japan.

 When I first came to the states, soy sauce is one of those things that tasted so funky to me even if familiar brand “kikkoman” although it was via kikkoman USA,instead of kikkoman Japan.

  Later, I found out that
the ingredients are different. The one I get from Asian store has 4
ingredients in the label:water,soybean,wheat,and salt. Other soy sauce
even kikkoman USA product  has more than 4 ingredients..Chinese brand’s
soy sauce has caramel coloring. Here is good site to talk about how soy sauce can be made differently.

 I have never used the website personally, but I found one online store called “EFood Depot” and they have the soy sauce that I like;Extra Fancy Whole bean soy sauce from Kikkoman Japan.

 You can find the soy sauce at EFood Depot here.

7.When everything is good, drizzle touch of sesame oil and stir and serve


Makes: 3 adult servings

 If you like Fried rice, you can find 6 version of fried rice recipes in the previous blog entries  (Fried rice,Omelet and rice,Chicken and rice, and Rice pancake, Double Pork Asian BBQ Fried rice, BBQ Fried rice, Basic Fried Rice with Thai Spring roll,Beef Tacos Fried Rice,Zesty BBQ Fried rice

 What are your favorite way to enjoy greens?

 To read full article written by Jennifer Motl.please click here.

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Dec 29, 2013 | Comments are off | People Health