Χορτα Βραστα (Boiled Greens)

 
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~ Ingredients for 4 servings:

~ 3 lbs. of any leafy green of your choice
~ 1 cup of white vinegar
~ 1 tbsp. salt
~ 1-2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil per serving
~ Fresh lemon juice to taste
~ 2-3 cloves of garlic (optional)
~ Salt and Pepper to taste 
Photo by Bingham Boy
   

 

~ In Greek and Cypriot Cuisine, Χορτα Βραστα (Boiled Greens) are a common side dish, usually eaten cold and seasoned with olive oil and lemon.
~ These are easy to prepare and when dressed with a bit of olive oil and lemon are really enjoyable for their clean and pure taste.
~ Most common green used for boiling consist of Chicory, Chard, Dandelions, Curly Endives, Spinach, Beet Root Leaves etc. and a variety of wild greens that are grown on the hills all over Greece and Cyprus like Vrouves, Agrelia (Wild Asparagus) Lapsanes etc.
~ Like spinach, boiled greens wilt and reduce when cooked to a fraction of their original quantity.
~ For four ample servings, boil approximately 3 lbs. of greens.
~ Like my grandmother use to say “Σακι Λαχανο Σκουτελι Μαγειρειο” in other words, a whole sack of greens make a small portion of their original quantity when cooked.
 
~ Trim any hard stems from the greens and wash well before cooking.
~ Discard any brown or mushy leaves.
~ Place the greens in a clean sink with plenty of water and 1 cup of white vinegar and soak them for about 30 minutes or more.
~ By soaking them with vinegar, any sand or dirt residue will sink to the bottom of the sink while the greens will float on top.
~ Remove the greens from the sink (running them under clean water) to a colander before draining the water.
~ Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add about 1 tbsp of salt to the water.
~ Carefully submerge the greens in the pot and boil for about 20 minutes or until the thickest parts of the stems are tender.
~ When boiling greens the pot should be covered with the lid in order for the green to preserve their color.
~ Check from time to time not to over boil.
~ Drain the greens in a colander and place in a large bowl and let them cool down.
~ Χορτα Βραστα (Boiled Greens) can served warm or at room temperature as a salad or a side dish to any main meal.
~ Serve with extra virgin olive oil, lemon wedges, salt and pepper and finely chopped garlic (optional) for your guests to serve themselves.
~ Or as they are in the bowl add olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste, chopped garlic (optional), mix well for the seasoning to go on all greens and serve.
~ Good luck and enjoy.