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Recipe: Cook Fresh Collard Greens for a Flavorful Dish
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
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.
- 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
- Heat oil in a large pot.
- 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.
- 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.
- Add the chicken broth, water, and vinegar. And then stir everything together.
- Bring everything to a boil; reduce the temperature to simmer.
- Place a lid on the pot.
- 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.
- 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
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.
Bountiful Benefits of Collards
- Benefits Of Collard Greens
Collard greens are the leaves of various cultivars of Brassica oleracea. Collard greens stand head over heels above other cruciferous vegetables in preventing a wide variety of cancers. To know the various health benefits of collard greens, read on..
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
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
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.
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
Another Fabulous Collard Greens Recipe
- Collard Greens That Had My GRANDMOTHER Asking For The Recipe
I discovered this recipe that is similar to my recipe in that it has very few ingredients. I think you will like this recipe, too.
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.