Spring greens are winter-hardy cabbages sown in July and August, ready for harvest during the first quarter of the year when other green veg is scarce. Beautifully sweet and tender, they bring youthful freshness at a time when plates feel in need of a lift after winter.
Storage & prep
Will keep 3 to 4 days
Storage: Dark and loosely packed leaves, they don’t have the shelf life of a more tightly formed head of cabbage. Store in the fridge in its bag, eat sooner rather than later. Will keep well for 3-4 days.
Prep: You’ll only need to strip the leaves away from the larger stalks. The smaller central leaves can be sliced and cooked, stalks and all. The best way to chop the leaves is to lie them on top of one another, roll into a tight cigar shape, shred them, widthways, thickly or thinly depending on the daintiness of your dish. Wash well before using.
They are best finely shredded and then gently fried in a little butter or oil, it will only take a matter of mins for them to wilt and become tender. They boil or steam in next to no time or can be stirred into any number of soups, stews and curries for the last few minutes.
A few mins is all you need, cook it for too long and, as with most brassicas, you’ll start to release more pungent flavours. Season with a little salt & pepper. If you feel the need then a little butter or olive oil and maybe a restrained squeeze of lemon to finish.
Spring Greens Recipe
Spring greens with chickpeas, garlic & mint
This nutritious vegan dish can be run up in 15 minutes
Spring greens work well with:
Alliums - garlic, leeks, onions, spring onions, wild garlic
Asian spices and flavourings
Dairy - butter, fresh and hard cheeses
Nuts - coconut, peanuts, pine nuts, sesame seeds
Lemon juice and zest
Lentils, mustard and mustard seeds
Pork in all forms
Fish and shellfish