Boiled mixed greens with olive oil and lemon

Neil Perry
Choose seasonal vegetables for this simple side dish.
Choose seasonal vegetables for this simple side dish. Photo: William Meppem

Nine times out of 10 cabbage would be my go-to boiled vegetable. Make sure you have lots of boiling water, and salt it so it tastes like the sea. Sea salt, freshly ground pepper, extra virgin olive oil and the juice from a fresh lemon, there is nothing more simple, but nothing more delicious.


400g mixed green vegetables (see below for winter suggestions)

extra virgin olive oil

lemon juice

sea salt and freshly ground pepper


1. Fill a large saucepan with water and salt it well – enough so the water tastes like the sea. Bring it to a rolling boil.

2. Drop each type of vegetable into the pan and cook until tender (see below for cooking times), checking each vegetable along the way to see if it's cooked to your liking.

3. Drain well. Toss in oil and lemon juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Winter veg suggestions & cooking times

Leeks, halved and cut into three-centimetre lengths: 3-5 minutes

Savoy cabbage leaves: 1 minute

Broccoli: 5 minutes

Broccolini: 4 minutes

English spinach leaves: 30 seconds

Brussels sprouts: 5 minutes