Mustard Greens are leaves of the mustard plants just as the name suggests. There are many different subspecies of these vegetables. Mustard Plant is a cruciferous vegetable just like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and brussels sprouts. The greens have wrinkles just like kale, but the taste is something sharper which mustard should represent.
Some of the subspecies of the Mustard Plant are Curled Mustard, Red Mustard, Mizuna, and Gai Choy.
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Order: Brassicales
- Family: Brassicaceae
- Genus: Brassica
- Species: B. juncea
- Binomial name: Brassica juncea
Mustard Greens Trivia
- People have been using Mustard Greens in the process of phytoremediation, which insinuates that they’ve been used to remove toxic substances from the soil.
- Mustard Oil, which is used regularly in Asian culture, has been banned in the United States in culinary use, though it is used as a massage oil.
- The United States was in the top ten list of the production of mustard seeds along with some other countries such as Canada, Germany, France.
Mustard Greens Buying Guide
Mustard Greens come in different shapes and sizes. The Southern Green is the most popular one but in general, mustard greens may have small or large leaves, from yellow-green to purple dark green. Mizuna, which is Japanese Mustard has thin and serrated leaves along with thin stems. Red Giant consists of very large leaves with a rounded shape.
In general, you should look for Mustard Greens that aren’t wilting and don’t have black spots all over them. Stay away from yellowing and browning greens as well.
Mustard Greens Production & Farming in Texas
There’s a variety of Mustard Greens that are grown in Texas. Curly Leaved types are Southern Giant Curled & Green Wave. Broadleaved types are Florida Broadleaf, Tendergreen, Savanna, Large Smooth Leaf.
The Curled types of Mustard will tolerate colder weathers better than Broadleaved types. They can be grown later on in the winter. Although, some gardeners don’t prefer the curled types because they’re not that easy to clean because of its wrinkles.
If possible, both of these types require full sunlight and well-drained soil.
There’s commonly plenty of pesticide residues found on leafy greens. Mustard Greens are sometimes used as a natural pesticide which is the reason they don’t have that many pesticide residues on them.
They have been used for more than 5,000 years and their roots started in the Himalayan region of India. The main producers of Mustard Greens today are Japan, Nepal, India & China, but the United States and Russia are also massive producers of these vegetables.
They don’t need much care. Plant them in full sun preferably but partial shade is fine. The plants grow quickly and they like cool weather.
Greens are usually just sent to stores in large wooden boxes where they’re sold either in plastic bags or tied to their stems and sold like that.
Enjoying Mustard Greens
Greens are in general very versatile. Which is no different to Mustard Greens. They are very delicious even raw, but you can cook them as well.
Some of the ways to prepare Mustard Greens are: Throw them into a salad, stir-fry them, put them into a soup, in a pesto, gumbo, or braise them.
Mustard Greens are stored just like many other greens in general. They should be wrapped in a paper towel and put in a plastic bag. Afterward, just place it in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator. They should keep up to three to four days.
Sauteed Peppery Mustard Greens will get the most flavor out of these delicious vegetables.
Saute onion in a large pan in olive oil on medium heat until the onions start caramelizing which is around five to ten minutes. Throw in the minced garlic and saute until fragrant.
Throw in the Mustard Greens and broth and cook until the greens just started wilting. Season it with salt and pepper and serve.
Mustard Greens, being highly nutritious with low amounts of calories have some of the health benefits that you would require. They comprise antioxidants, provide heart health and energy, and are great at fighting diseases.
They are also a great source of:
- Vitamins A, C & K
They’re also low in sodium and cholesterol-free.
When Are Mustard Greens in Season in Texas?
To find out when Mustard Greens are in season in Texas, please check the seasonal chart below. Why is this important? We are rarely encouraged to think about the physical lengths our food travels before arriving on the market shelves. And all of this travel comes with a hefty environmental cost that is concealed from the consumer’s eye. One of the most salient benefits to eating seasonally is that you are effectively reducing your carbon footprint and supporting a more geographically sustainable food economy. Check other fruit and veg that’s in season in Texas now.