Mustard greens
How to choose: This soul-food favorite sports vivid green and frilly leaves (some varieties even boast shades of red or purple). Leaves should be crisp, with fairly thin stems and no yellowing. Mustard greens keep well for several days when refrigerated in plastic.

Preparation tips: These sharp, peppery greens live up to their name. Relatively sturdy, they tolerate cooking and pair well with robust flavors. Wash thoroughly, strip greens from tough stems, and tear into bite-size pieces. Sauté in olive oil with shallots, ginger, and curry paste; toss into stir-fries with shrimp, peppers, and soy sauce.

Health benefits: A health-boosting crucifer, mustard greens contain vitamins A and C, plus lutein and folate.

—Elisa Bosley

Chicken Soup with Mustard Greens
(Serves 5)

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cups peeled, cubed sweet potato (1 medium potato)
5 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 15-ounce can white kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken breast
4 cups mustard greens (stems removed), cut into thin strips
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

1. Heat oil in large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and cook 5 minutes. Add sweet potato, broth, and thyme and allow to come to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 10 minutes or until potato is almost tender.

2. Stir in beans, chicken, and mustard greens. Allow to cook another 10 minutes or so. Add sea salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 289 calories
% fat calories: 24
Fat: 8g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 48mg
Protein: 26g
Carbohydrate: 30g
Fiber: 8g
Sodium: 688mg

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Recipe provided by James Rouse, ND, the creator of Optimum Wellness and The Fit Kitchen, seen weekly on NBC's KUSA television news.