Have you ever eaten collard greens? Before this, I had not. I always like cooking with new ingredients, as long as I know what to do with them. I do like my greens like kale and spinach but I’ve just never tackled collards.
I’ve watched cooking shows where they make collards, and it usually contains bacon or some other smoked pork product. They cook down in stock for a long time until they are dark green and tender. This is a very popular dish in the Southern United States.
This recipe is the Pot of Collards from Thug Kitchen 101 book. Since this is a vegan book, there is no bacon/meat here. To get the same sort of smokey flavour, this recipe calls for chipotle peppers in adobo.
If you’ve never dealt with collard greens before, their texture can be quite surprising. They feel a little rubbery and tough, I don’t think it would be enjoyable to eat them raw. The leaves are also huge which I didn’t expect. So because of their toughness, they need to be cooked down for a little while, a quick sauté will not suffice. It’s so strange though because usually you don’t want to cook your vegetables that much but you have to do that with collards. They go from bright green to a very dark and unappealing shade – but that’s what it’s supposed to be.
These cooked down in some broth, garlic, the chipotle in adobo and sauteed onion. After simmering away for like 30 minutes, the collards really soaked up all the flavours and softened up. The recipe also seasons them with a little lemon juice, pepper and hot sauce at the end. The acidity and heat really helps to wake up the greens.
These were some tasty greens. They would go well with any protein or as a topping on a grain bowl. Just eat these with some rice and beans and dinner is done.