Don’t let these vibrant greens scare you, they may not be as trendy as kale, but they have their own cult following and for good reason. If you grew up in the south you probably already know how good these greens are, but I came to them late in my culinary journey and I have to say I didn’t think I would like them (but I hated kale for a long time too).
If you’ve never eaten mustard greens before I suggest nibbling on the smallest leaf you can find just as a test. It will be a bit peppery – bread will cut that if you find it really unpleasant – but you may be surprised to find it isn’t as harsh as you thought. Go ahead and add small pieces to pep up a salad. If you found it too strong, cook it. How long you cook it for depends on your own preferences – but how do you know your preference, if you’ve never eaten this before! For me the texture makes the difference. Even though longer cooking makes a milder dish, I do not (despite what people think about the English) like the texture of well cooked vegetables so I go for a shorter cook with smaller pieces. Adding oil or foods rich in fats, like bacon, cheese, or nuts, can make the dish milder, or you can add other strong flavors that balance the bitterness, such as hot peppers, chipotle peppers in adobo, garlic, liquid smoke.
Use a recipe at first, but use the tips above to help choose the recipe.