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Many Mizuna Ideas

29 May

A member who prefers to remain anonymous sent me these great suggestions. He, his wife and two children manage to consume TWO shares a week, so I know they know what to do with greens!

We eat mizuna in many ways, but here are just a few:

As a salad. Toss mizuna with whatever other salad goodies you like. Any and all.  Here’s one way I like to go: I’ll take orange slices, roasted cashews, and cubed jicama and toss them together into a kind of salsa, with a home made orange-honey dressing. We serve a pile of Mizuna (with or without other goodies) and spoon helpings of the above “relish” on top and chow down! The orange-honey dressing is simply frozen orange juice concentrate thinned with just enough water (or olive oil or any liquid, incl. wine) to reach a desired consistency, then combined with a little honey. I have no precise measurements; all done by tastes. You adjust and add as you wish.

Stir-Fry. This is wonderful with green garlic.  Divide green garlic into two parts: the green top and the lower half including the bulb. Slice the bulb portion and slice the green top portion. Heat a pan to cooking temperature, add oil, then quickly add in sliced bulb portion and let it sear for 5-7 seconds or so, or until the garlic aroma hits the nose, then add in the green top portion and stir a bit and cover. Let sit for 10 seconds or so, then add Mizuna and start tossing until it just begins to go limp (not until wilted). Cover for 10 more seconds or so and serve. Basically it’s a quick hot-tossed Mizuna with garlic.  The green garlic tops take longer to cook than the mizuna, so add it to the pan first. The desirable texture is ‘just-cooked mizuna’, not ‘dead and wilted mizuna’… with sparkingly garlicky flavors.

Other methods. We like using fresh Mizuna as a bed for cooked goodies. The fresh greens counter-balance the cooked and seasoned flavors of the goodies on top: Stir-fry sliced beef in various sauces and pour on top of a bed of fresh Mizuna (sliced to bite size) to serve. Curry stewed vegetables or meat on top of Mizuna, or braised tofu or braised shitake on top of Mizuna. Be creative!

In the end, I just cook with whatever is on hand and make the best of it, so it is hard to provide measurements. Sometimes I cannot repeat what everyone likes because the ingredients are gone or proportions are forgotten! 🙂

Here’s an undated Bon Appetit recipe I modified to use mizuna (it just says ‘greens’ and mentions mustard greens, so since mizuna is a mustard green, I think it will be just fine!)

Penne with Greens [Mizuna], Olives, and Feta
serves 4 to 6

“Greens are paired with salty olives and feta – to great effect. The greens cook in the pasta water, making this an efficient one-pot meal.”

¼ C chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 tsp. finely grated lemon peel
1 garlic clove, minced
1 large bunch of greens (such as spinach, mustard greens, kale, or broccoli rabe; about 1 lb.), stems removed (except for spinach), torn up
12 oz. penne pasta
5 tbsp. olive oil, divided
½ C coarsely chopped pitted Kalamata olives
½ C crumbled feta cheese (about 3 oz.)

Mix parsley, lemon peel and garlic in small bowl; set aside.

Bring large pot of salted water to boil. Add greens and cook just until tender, 1 to 6 minutes, depending on type of greens [the mizuna would be a minute or less!! Probably more like 30 seconds or so]. Using skimmer or slotted spoon, transfer greens to colander to drain. Return water to boil. Add pasta and cook until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving ¾ C pasta cooking liquid. Return pasta to pot; add greens and 3 tbsp. oil and toss. Stir in olives, feta, and enough reserved pasta cooking water by ¼ cupfuls to moisten. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl. Drizzle with remaining 2 tbsp. oil, then sprinkle with parsley mixture and serve.

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