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Leafy Greens Paperback – May 31, 1995

4.5 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

From the bestselling author of the How to Cook Everything and Food Matters books, comes the best cooking resource on Leafy Greens.

In the world of vegetables, none are more versatile, varied, and exciting than greens. And with farmers' markets everywhere and vastly expanded selections in supermarkets, there has never been a better time to become a fan. In this reissue of his classic Leafy Greens, bestselling author and New York Times columnist Mark Bittman showcases more than 30 kinds of greens, with recipes that are simple to prepare, and wonderfully delicious.

Greens, of course, are among the healthiest foods on the planet. With a wide range of micro-nutrients, vitamins, and minerals, this single food group packs more than its share of nutrition into every bite. In a handy A-to-Z format, Leafy Greens offers practical advice on all the available kinds: the different varieties and how to buy them, their specific nutrients, the best cooking methods, and how to substitute them in recipes.

But Bittman wants you to enjoy leafy greens primarily for their flavor. He shows how the bitterness of dandelion and raab, the sweetness of collards, the creamy nuttiness of bok choi, and the tartness of sorrel need little more than a few quick additions to become the star of a wonderful meal. He encourages you to seek out young greens for surprising and delicious salads. Cooking techniques for larger greens are uniformly quick and simple. Almost all greens can be quickly and easily stewed, sautéed, or stir-fried to melting tenderness, or quickly poached, "shocked" in ice, and served cold or reheated for perfect flavor and added convenience.

Graze your way through recipes like Thai Beef Salad with Boston Lettuce, Spinach and Lentil Soup, Spicy Cole Slaw, Crispy Skin Salmon with Gingery Kale, and Stir-fried Shrimp with Bok Choi and Black Beans. Lasagna with Endive and Radicchio is perfect for entertaining, while simple dishes like Pasta with Broccoli Raab and Chicken make weeknight meals a snap.

Leafy Greens has everything: great ideas for salads, soups, sides, and mains; key nutritional information; the cooking guidance you need to make a vast array of green vegetables a delicious part of your daily diet. And with Bittman as your teacher, you know you're getting a batch of wonderful recipes from America's favorite home cook. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

Mark Bittman's handy guide to healthy, delicious greens

Kale and collards. Radicchio. Chinese cabbage. Swiss chard. Mustard greens. Broccoli raab. Arugula. Belgian endive. Greens are among our most delicious, nutritious, and versatile vegetables. All of us know we should be cooking with them, but few of us know how. In this newly re-released version of his classic Leafy Greens, bestselling author Mark Bittman shares what he knows about more than 30 common kinds of greens so that you can start eating satisfying salads, sides, and main courses featuring them every day.

Bittman will help you learn where and when to purchase them, why they're good for you, and how to cook them in more than 120 delicious, healthy ways. And with his easy-to-use A-to-Z format and single-page recipes, Leafy Greens packs as much information into one book as there are micro-nutrients in a bunch of kale.

Look inside for delicious recipes like:

  • Grilled Chicken Salad with Mesclun

  • Gingered Cabbage

  • Coconut Curry Soup with Chard

  • Risotto with Arugula and Shrimp

  • Hamburgers with Spinach and Parmesan

  • Baked Penne with Radicchio and Gorgonzola

  • Corn and Kale Stew

  • . . .plus many more!

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 197 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (May 31, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0028603559
  • ISBN-13: 978-0028603551
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #427,453 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book title caught my attention because I am always looking for new ways to have greens. The recipes in the book are, for the most part, nice to have. The ingredient lists are not overly complicated. However, the bulk of the recipes call for meat, seafood or dairy. No further ethical statement here, just beware if you were expecting a book for plant eaters you might look elsewhere.
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By A Customer on April 11, 2000
Format: Paperback
So, you have stood in how many Asian grocery stores looking at the abundant greenery of these leafy veges? Too embrassed to ask the cashier what the hell to do to do with it . So you amble out with your head hung in wonderment. Wonder no more! Bittman to the rescue. Which pugnent goes with which sweet. Ohh the texture and the lace like delicatness of each leaf. He will set you straight. A true saviour to the salad bowl. I'm enlightened and impressed. No more boring B-B-Q salads. Thankyou.
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I'm a big fan of Mark Bittman's recent work. His old Minimalist cookbooks don't impress me much, but ever since he started to act more like Michael Pollan he's been a favorite of mine. This is a small (compared to How To Cook Everything) book that focuses on leafy greens. I think it is eminently successfull.

The index needs to be your friend. I'm not really certain what order the recipes are in, so without the index it would be an exhaustive search to find anything.

The first part of the book is well worth mentioning. It talks about leafy greens (individually), explaining what they are, what they do, what they're like, etc. The recipes are mostly just recipes, but the explanations of greens are useful beyond attempting a single recipe.
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This is a great new cookbook, beautifully written, organized, and timely. Every day something appears in the newspapers, etc. about the unhealthy diet in America. This small, beautifully printed paperback book literally invites you in and Mark Bittman makes you want to try every recipe and suggestion in the book (which I am doing). The fact thqt he lost 35 lbs. writing the book make it even more interesting!
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For the last 3+ years, I've followed a vegan version of Dr. Junger's Clean elimination diet 85% of the time (pancakes...oatmeal with cream/butter weakness). This set of recipes makes for an effortless & yummy way to remain on task. "The Greens" section includes the varieties, nutritional information, buying, cooking and substitution tips from Alaria to Watercress.

With that said, I was a bit surprised to see that the recipes here included meat, however, the soup recipes alone more than made up for my confusion. After the first flip through, I wasn't going to let a bit of animal protein keep me from enjoying these simple treasures. With a large majority of the soup recipes, vegetable stock can be substituted for the chicken stock, coconut oil for butter, soy sauce for tamari, and meat can be left out altogether--for those who need or have a preference.

I'm loving the:
Garlic Soup with Spinach
Creamy Kale Soup
Cabbage Soup-Asian Style
Kale Soup with Soy (Gluten-Free Tamari) & Lime
Coconut Curry Soup with Chard
Chicken Soup with Chines Cabbage & Thin Noodles--with rice noodles, sans chicken
Spinach and Lentil Soup
Soup of Greens, Beans & Rice
Corn & Kale Stew

Mr. Bittman includes many variations (greens, fruit, veggies, herbs, meat, etc.) for recipes and in addition to the soup category, there is a salad, side dish, light dish and main course section. With the weather finally warming up, I can't wait to dive into the Salad in Pita Bread with Tahini Dressing (sans Pita) and the Napa Cabbage Salad with Sesame Vinaigrette. The salad section also includes a tempting array of vinaigrettes and a Thai Beef Salad with Boston Lettuce that my meat eaters request.
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Format: Paperback
Bittman was good before he got famous - this book dates from 1997 or so. He describes and distinguishes among 30 types of greens, and gives a bunch (pun intended) of straightforward recipes for using them in tasty ways. Also methods for cooking them plain, with recommendations for which methods work best for which greens.

We use this book all the time, and have replaced two copies that disappeared, probably into the hands of housesitters.

An updated version is coming out in the spring of 2012, but if you are fond of greens its worthwhile to grab a used copy now. Why wait?
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I have four of Mr. Bittman's books and love them all. Even though this is a bit duplicative, we decided having this slimmer volume handy would help us up our creativity with greens. Trying to up the "greens and beans" portion of our diet with more variety in terms of both types of greens and tastes. He's an encouraging writer.
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Very useful book, especially for the gardening details. I've read a lot about gardening for leafy greens, but Bittman provides any number of enlightening details I hadn't found elsewhere. (And demystifies the confusion about oregano! Thanks MB!)

The recipes can be found elsewhere these days, though when he wrote the book there was likely a paucity of good instructions for preparing greens.
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