Recipe: Cook Fresh Collard Greens for a Flavorful Dish

Fresh Collard Greens
Fresh Collard Greens | Source

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 25 min
Ready in: 35 min
Yields: Serves Two People

Freshly Picked Collard Greens

A couple of days ago I went out into the garden and picked leaves from my collard greens plant. I picked all but two leaves to encourage the plant to continue growing and producing more leaves. Expert gardeners call this sustainable harvesting.

As long as I leave a few leaves on the plant, the plant will continue to provide collard greens for me to enjoy until the end of the growing season. Sustainable harvesting is a great way for me to garden because my household consists of only two people - my husband and me. We only need a few leaves at a time to prepare enough for the two of us to enjoy a hearty dish.

I do the same thing with lettuce. When I harvest lettuce, I just pluck the amount I need to make that one meal and the plant just keeps on producing salad lettuce all season long.

Harvesting Collard Greens

Sustainable Harvesting

This video shows the gardener harvesting collard greens using the sustainable harvesting method. Sustainable harvesting is a way of harvesting a plant so that the plant continues to produce harvestable vegetables.


Enjoy the Fresh Flavor of Vegetables

I like to experience the full flavor of vegetables, so when I cook fresh vegetables I don't add a lot of ingredients and I don't like to cook them very long. My method goes against the way many folks cook their collard greens; they add things like ham hocks, bacon, or some other meat to add flavor. Granted, it does add a lot of great flavor and I enjoy eating spiced up collard greens as much as everyone else. But, I have a quirky thing about the amount of spices that go into my recipes. When it comes to vegetables that I have grown from my back yard, for some reason, I have a need to taste the vegetables and not the spices.

My recipe for collard greens is simple, quick and easy. This recipe is just for two people, so you will have to adjust it for your serving needs.

Ingredients

  • 10 Leaves Collard Greens, whole
  • 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
  • 1/4 White Onion, diced
  • 1 Garlic Clove, minced
  • 1/8 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 pinch Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Chicken Broth
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1 teaspoon Vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Hot Sauce, optional

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in a large pot.
  2. Add onions, garlic, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and sugar to the oil and stir until the onions are caramelized. This should take about five minutes.
  3. Add the collard greens. Stir to mix. Make sure you get the oil and other ingredients to touch all of the leaves. The greens will wilt a litle, but that's alright. That's exactly what you want them to do.
  4. Add the chicken broth, water, and vinegar. And then stir everything together.
  5. Bring everything to a boil; reduce the temperature to simmer.
  6. Place a lid on the pot.
  7. Cook for about 20 minutes. Depending on the texture you like for your collard greens and the temperament of your stove, it could take a few more minutes. Some people like their collard greens to be really soft and limp. I like my collard greens to have more "chew". If you like limpy collard greens then you will want to cook them for 30 to 45 minutes.
  8. Serve. If you would like a little extra heat (I do!), then add hot sauce at this point, or place the bottle of hot sauce on the table and let diners use as they desire.

Cooked Collard Greens

I didn’t take photos of my own preparation, but I made a diligent search of a photo that depicts my cooking experience.
I didn’t take photos of my own preparation, but I made a diligent search of a photo that depicts my cooking experience. | Source

Fresh Vegetables Add Better Flavor

I find that fresh vegetables provide the best flavor for any dish I prepare. It doesn’t take a lot of seasonings to prepare fabulous food when using vegetables fresh from the garden.

Note: Store bought collard greens have to be washed a LOT! The greens that I pick from my garden only need to be rinsed. That is a real time saver for me. Also, I don’t remove the center stem, like some cooks do. I think it is a matter of preference. The stem is a little fibrous. But, I am a fan of eating foods with all the fiber, so I tend to leave stems intact.


What to do With Leftover Collard Greens

After my meal, I had a little bit of collard greens left over. There wasn't enough to make up a full serving, so I refrigerated what was left (including the collard greens juice) and used it in a soup for lunch the next day. I cut up the collard greens and then added the greens and juice to what I call a collard greens soup. My collard greens soup is so simple.

COLLARD GREENS SOUP
Serves 2 people

INGREDIENTS:
½ cup chicken broth
½ cup water
6 Ready-made frozen pot stickers
Any amount of leftover collard greens, chopped into bite-sized pieces
½ teaspoon soy sauce

DIRECTIONS:
1. Put all ingredients except soy sauce into a medium pot and bring to a boil.
2. Reduce heat and let simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Remove from heat. Pour soy sauce into the soup and stir.
4. Serve

The collard greens and the frozen pot stickers are already seasoned, so you don't need to add any additional spices for this fast, easy, and flavorful dish. I have also made this soup using frozen wontons and shu mai (found in the frozen food isle of most grocery stores).

Good Old Southern Style Collard Greens

Southern Style Collard Greens

This video is of Jessica Harris, author of the book titled, “High on the Hog”. In the video, Harris shows us how to prepare collard greens southern style, which I might add, is a little different than the way I cook my collard greens, nevertheless a wonderful and delicious way to serve collard greens.

Rate My Collard Greens Recipe

5 stars from 2 ratings of Cook Fresh Collard Greens for a Flavorful Dish

Sustainable Harvesting

How to Harvest Leafy Vegetables

When I first moved to the country, I knew very little about gardening and how to grow food that would produce a harvest to provide the nutrition I need to survive. Through sustainable harvesting techniques, I learned that I don't need to live on acres of land to produce enough to survive. I just need to be smart about what I plant and how I harvest it.

The best video I have ever seen on how to harvest green leafy vegetables is the one produced by John (last name unknown). I have subscribed to his YouTube Channel where he has a number of videos showing how to develop an organic garden. They are all well done and informative videos.

More by this Author


Comments 24 comments

gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 3 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

You are quite welcome. God bless you and have a lovely night.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 3 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hi gmwilliams! I'm growing collard greens in my garden this year. I never heard of putting cheese on them. I've also never heard of baking them, but it sounds yummy. I'm going to try them that way. Thanks.


gmwilliams profile image

gmwilliams 3 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

Marlene, Voted this hub WAY UP. I immensely enjoy collard greens. There are so many ways to cook them. My favorite way is to cut them up, put some garlic salt and cheddar cheese on them and put them in the oven, 350 degrees and cook them for about 30-45 minutes, crispy and yummy. Of course, fresh collared greens are the best. As I live in the city, I purchase them at a famer's market in the summer or a health food store in the fall and winter.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 3 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Thanks for your feedback, rajan jolly! I am glad to have discovered sustainable harvesting. This year, I had a very long season of harvesting greens. The guy in the video (regarding sustainable harvesting) has some amazing videos that are quite helpful for today's backyard gardeners.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

Very interesting recipe Marlene and love the sustainable gardening tip and video. I think it is a great way to keep harvesting greens till the end of the season.

Voting it up, useful and interesting.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hi idigwebsites, I just whipped up a small batch of collard greens for lunch yesterday. It was so quick and easy. This time, I cut the greens in strips, like the lady in the video. I think chefs call it chiffonade. Thank you very much for commenting.


idigwebsites profile image

idigwebsites 4 years ago from United States

Your veggies look really good. Fresh is still the best, and someone who has a backyard garden in their homes is really lucky. I will try your recipe, thanks for sharing it! :)


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hi Mama Kim 8. The collard green leaves are hearty, so loose netting should not harm them. I like lettuce all year long and they don't like the cold. So, planting lettuce in pots and bringing them in before it gets cold works out really well, especially since I use sustainable harvesting techniques. The lettuce root system is very shallow, so I don't need to use huge pots. A medium sized pot works well. I don't have a lot of space inside, so that's a good thing.


Mama Kim 8 profile image

Mama Kim 8 4 years ago

I never thought to grow lettuce in pots... maybe I'll try that next year. Can collard greens be tied or netted to minimize the bugs? Not sure what it looks like as it's growing.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hello Mama Kim 8, I read somewhere that collard greens are easy to grow so I tried them. They practically grow themselves. I planted in pots and, seriously all I do is give them water. The more I pluck the leaves, the more they produce. It's ongoing and I really like that a lot. I do the same thing with lettuce.


Mama Kim 8 profile image

Mama Kim 8 4 years ago

I love your gardening tips for sustainable harvesting! I've never tried collard greens but now I think I'll put them on my garden list for spring ^_^


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hello dwachira and tjdavis. Like you, I am very fond of fresh garden vegetables. When I cook with vegetables picked from my garden, they need little or no seasoning. They just naturally taste better. Thank you for reading and for your comments.


tjdavis profile image

tjdavis 4 years ago from Moscow, Texas

I love greens of all types and especially right out of the garden...great hub. Makes me hungry ;-)


dwachira profile image

dwachira 4 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

I like the vegetables when they are fresh as they taste a lot better, i would like to try your recipe. Voted up.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Thank you, mvillecat. It is surprising how resilient greens are. They are my best performing vegetables this year.


mvillecat profile image

mvillecat 4 years ago from Milledgeville, Georgia

My husband cooks the greens in the family. I am about to plant some for the first time in our garden. I pinned this Hub for future reference and voted up!


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hi Helen, I actually have been missing you. I hope all is well.

Thank you for reading. And, yes, I love my collard greens. They are doing nicely, even with all the heat we have been having. Some of them "bolted" and were not useable, but there is this one plant that just keeps on producing like it was made for me. I just had to pick the leaves and enjoy them. I don't like to add a lot of seasonings and one thing I do that most cooks do not do is, I leave the leaves whole. Most recipes ask you to cut up the leaves. I like picking up a whole mouthful of greans with one fork and stufffing the whole leaf in my mouth for the fullest of flavor.

Thank you so much for visiting. I am really happy to "see" you. Take care. Many blessings to you.


oceansider 4 years ago

Dear Marlene,

I really like your recipe for collard greens. Actually, I have never eaten them before, but have naturally seen them and wasn't quite sure how you would cook them.....well now I know how to cook them, thank you so much. Growing them in your back yard must make them so much better I'm sure!.....By the way, I just wanted to tell you that you haven't heard from me lately, because for the last few weeks I haven't been able to participate much at H.P., due to personal stuff going on right now, but I am visiting today to read some of my favorite writers' hubs....like yours!......Take care, and God bless you!.......Helen


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hi catalone, I like quick and easy recipes. This one is easy and lets you really taste the vegetable. I hope you have a chance to try it some day.


catmalone profile image

catmalone 4 years ago

Very well put together hub and beautiful pictures. Your vegatables looks so healthy and delicious. Thanks for the recipe!


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Hi Mhatter99! You are welcome. I hope you have an opportunity to try it some day.


Mhatter99 profile image

Mhatter99 4 years ago from San Francisco

Thank you for sharing this recipe


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 4 years ago from Northern California, USA Author

Thanks, unknown spy. It is healthy and delicious! I can hardly wait to harvest again.


unknown spy profile image

unknown spy 4 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

Hi Marlene... Sounds delicious..fresh collard green is one healthy recipe.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working