All green vegetables should be thrown into abundance of fast boiling water ready salted and skimmed, with the addition of the small quantity of carbonate of soda which we have recommended, in a previous page of this chapter; the pan should be left uncovered, and every precaution taken to prevent the smoke from reaching its contents. Endive, sprouts, and spring greens, will only require copious washing before they are boiled; but savoys, large lettuces, and close-leaved cabbages should be thrown into salt and water for half an hour or more before they are dressed, with the tops downwards to draw out the insects. The stems of these last should be cut off, the decayed leaves stripped away, and the vegetable halved or quartered, or split deeply across the stalk-end, and divided entirely before it is dished.
Very young greens, 15 to 20 minutes; lettuces, 20 to 30 minutes; large savoys, or cabbages, 1 to 1½ hour, or more.
Obs.—When the stalk of any kind of cabbage is tender it is ready to serve. Turnip-greens should be well washed in several waters, and boiled in a very large quantity to deprive them of their bitterness.