CEiMB: Short-Cut Collard Greens
Greens are a staple of Southern cooking, and being that I’ve lived in Georgia for nearly twenty years now, you might find it surprising to know that until this week’s CEiMB recipe, I had never tried collard greens. You can blame my Yankee mother for that, I guess :) Like most country-style cooking, greens are usually prepared in a way that manages to void all nutritional value, so I was excited to see Ellie’s take on this homestyle standard.
A couple years ago I discovered kale and have enjoyed it prepared many different ways, so I was optimistic about having a similar positive experience with collard greens. My anticipation grew after reading several other CEiMBers great reviews. Having never sampled collard greens before, I wasn’t sure what a traditional recipe would look like, but I liked the sound of salty bacon, cider vinegar to tone down the bitterness, sweet maple syrup, and a dash of heat with the red pepper flakes in Ellie’s recipe. All the components sounded perfect together.
While I was at the store, I saw a bag of kale greens next to the bag of collard greens I ended up getting. For a brief second, I thought about using the kale in place of collards since I know I enjoy kale, but I decided to push myself to try something new. In retrospect, I’m glad I tried the collard greens, but I think I would have preferred this recipe with kale. I can’t really put in to words the differences between the two types of greens, but I just think I prefer the flavor of the kale ever so slightly. I will definitely use this technique to cook greens again though. The smoky, salty, sweet, spicy all went together beautifully, and I’m glad I got to try this recipe!
Short-Cut Collard Greens
1 lb Collard Greens
1 tbsp Water
2 oz Canadian Style Bacon
1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 medium Onion, chopped
1 tbsp Cider Vinegar
1 tbsp Maple Syrup
1/8 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
3/4 cup Chicken Broth Low Sodium
You can find cleaned and cut collard greens in a bag in your produce department which are ready to be cooked, or you can buy it whole in bunches. If you buy it in a bunch you will need to remove the stems and center ribs from the collard greens and discard. Then, cut the leaves into 1/2-inch strips.
Place the greens into a large, microwave-safe bowl with the water and cover tightly. Microwave on high for 8 minutes.
In the meantime, preheat a large skillet and cook the bacon for 2 minutes on each side. Remove the bacon from the pan, chop, and set aside. Add the oil and onion to the pan and cook until onions have softened, about 2 minutes. Add the collard greens and stir in the vinegar, maple syrup, red pepper flakes, and broth. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered, for 30 minutes. Add the chopped bacon to the pan, and season with salt.
Source: Ellie Krieger’s “The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life”, p. 256
4 servings | 2 POINTS