Trick for Washing Collards, Mustard, Kale. Other sandy greens.

If you have a lot of greens that need washing for New Years. Here's a trick my grandparents used

  • Posted by: Sam1148
  • December 30, 2014


Exbruxelles February 12, 2017
I can't imagine having to wash enough greens to warrant using the washing machine, but I have used it for a similar application--rinsing and gently washing pickling cucumbers. It worked perfectly.
Synolve C. February 11, 2017
Sam: Great Advice!!! Thanks for the info! About to try it now. I live in TN. No matter where you live, we are all trying to conserve water and work to aid the planet. For people who have HE washing machines your method is NOT a WASTE of WATER!! What's an HE Top-Load Washing Machine? It's an Agitator models cost less and are faster than top-loading washing machines without an agitator, known as high-efficiency (HE) washing machines. Most HE washers are better at cleaning, gentler on fabrics, use less water, and have larger capacities. Plus, it's not like people are washing greens 3-4 times per day...not as much as a family with kids might wash clothes anyway...
Sam1148 December 31, 2014
I have sad for people thinking this wasting water. Did you use you washing machine to wash clothes and underwear in your sink with 2 gallons of water? How about your Cloth Diapers.
And X number of quarts of water in the washing machine is the same as X numbers of quarts of water in the sink. But the mechanical spin and rinse and spray save water. With modern Washing Machine...they use less water than a large sink.

And if you're chemically out your washing machine with environmentally safe Citric acid and final rinse of White Vinegar removes many soap chemicals....which can cause skin allergies. You should really do that anyway..for cloth washing machines and dishwasher. (dishwashers will built up 'white dust'--running it empty with Citric Acid will remove the soap scum build will white vinegar).

It's another use for an appliance in the house...I find it odd that it's because 'clothes' it's off limits. Why is washing a mess of greens in a washing machine Irresponsible in California as opposed to washing any clothing?
ChefJune December 31, 2014
I think it's a great idea, Sam. But I can't do it because I live in a building with a shared laundry room. Although it would be a great idea to run vinegar through all the washers. I'll have to bring that up at Condo Board.
Susan W. December 30, 2014
Ru oh Sam.

I pull the leaves off of the stems (the stems go into my Mom's compost if I'm in San Diego or to the chickens and hogs that my friend owns if I'm in Oregon) and slice or tear them as needed for whatever I am going to do with them. The leaves go into a big bowl of water. Swish swish and into the salad spinner they go. I've never found a need to use two bowls of water, but the greens I get are pretty clean.

The bowl of sandy water goes out to the tub collected by my apt complex community garden. #conservation
kimhw December 30, 2014
Find a container that is taller than it is wide. That way you wont end up scooping up the sand that falls down. A full Washing machine is quite obsessive. To dry move to your salad spinner or a towel.
paseo December 30, 2014
A better trick is to soak them in warm (not hot) water in your salad spinner for a bit, drain, rinse, making sure the dirt, etc., is gone, then soak in cold water to crisp. We did this in the restaurant with produce from local farms and it works really well. I agree that Sam's method is a serious waste of water esp. in the west.

Voted the Best Reply!

Pegeen December 30, 2014
Separate the leaves of the vegetable. Place in a large bowl of cold water and swirl with your hands. Sand should sink to the bottom of the bowl. Using your hands, transfer leaves to a dishtowel. Dump water, refill bowl, put leaves back into bowl, swirl, etc. Repeat until you don't see sand at the bottom of the bowl. Dry off leaves in a dishtowel or salad spinner.
sexyLAMBCHOPx December 30, 2014
Um, no thanks.
Sam1148 December 30, 2014
Clean your washing machine with several cups of vinegar on the wash cycle. Add the vinegar to the fabric softener cup too.

This removes any soap scum. If you have a cup of citric acid that's even better to use to clean the machine. Run it again with just water to rinse it well.

Then you can just throw in all the green into the full tub of cold water. (I even add a cup of white vinegar here too to help remove any pests or pesticides)
Give Swirl with your hands. Let it sit a few mins.

Then throw it through the rinse and spin cycle. Yea! it's also a salad spinner.
kcolwell December 30, 2014
Wow. What an irresponsible waste of water. If we did that in California we would go to jail. How about conserving a few resources?!
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