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Aug 27, 2013 09:58 PM


A friend of mine grew collards in his garden this year, apparently quite successfully. The only problem is he has absolutely no idea what to do with them now that he has them. So I'm turning to you, the CH community, to give me some ideas to give him as to what to do with his bounty. (And me, as well, because I have a feeling I will be rewarded for my efforts here.)

I'm not sure if being in central New York State has any bearing on the answers, but it sure does on the questions he's asking. Any and all help is greatly appreciated.

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  1. I've only lived in NY and New England, so never had braised greens until a trip to Tennessee 20 yrs ago. I loved them and asked a Kentucky-born friend how to make them. Southern tradition is long-cooked greens but I came to prefer the easier-to-make quicker version. I sweat onions and minced garlic in olive oil in a large, wide pan, preferably with some bacon or pancetta. Remove the meat when rendered. Add a heaping mound of chopped, washed greens. Stems can be included if you separate them and add them first, so as to give them some time to soften before adding the leaves. Once the greens have wilted enough to allow stirring, add a little ham broth or chicken broth, and some optional red pepper flakes. Cover and cook on low heat until most of the liquid is evaporated. Return the meat to the greens. A splash of balsamic vinegar at the end is nice.

    1 Reply
    1. re: greygarious

      I agree with braised. I grew up with Southern braised collard greens and they are delicious. My good ol' Southern grandmother uses either ham hocks or sometimes fat back but will use bacon if there's no other piggy fat around. We like to eat them with a bottle of hot sauce and vinegar - apple cider and malt vinegar are both great with braised greens.

    2. Hi AL B -

      We grow ours too, buying the seeds on Ebay from Portugal.
      This is Brassicaceae, specifically Couve Galega or Collard Greens.

      We usually wash them, roll up the leaves, and thin slice the rolls into thin strips. The strips are them slow cooked with garlic and a little oil and water, Brasilian style with black beans, and rice. We cannot get enough of them, due to the fact that a lot of leaves cook down about 60%.

      The leaves can also be added to soups, broth, and torte mix.

      Very nutritious with a lot of good minerals.

      1 Reply
      1. re: SWISSAIRE

        Sounds delicious to me. Collards are more traditional in the Southern US than in the North. It is rare to find them in northern supermarkets.

        I remember being in a Pennsylvania supermarket decades ago while a southerner was hunting in vain for collard greens. I sadly had to inform him that he will not find them in our area.

      2. look up recipes for cooked kale, collard will generally work for all of them.
        also, ethiopian collard greens (goman wat)
        soups of all sorts.
        (just had a delicious curried vegetable soup with kale in it, could EASILY have used collard greens instead)

        1. they do cook down. ham hock or jowl or just bacon in the stew makes a big difference. after done I like to sprinkle rice vinegar that has been steeped in peppers for a few days (esp. Thai bird chilies) wow I am sounding really fussy/weird.

          don't hesitate to toss in some turnips or parsnips. and more garlic.

          1. Braised, soups, stews, rice dishes, potato dishes.