Collards February 10, 2006Posted by merp in Food.
What to do with collards?
I used to treat them exactly like I would any other green: rinse, chop, heat some oil in a wok, add crushed garlic, maybe a dried chili or some black mustard seed, toss in the greens and stirfry till bright green. Add salt.
But you know what? That’s just not what collards want. I took a trip to Atlanta last November and had *real* collards, Southern style. (Well, not quite authentic, as it was a vegetarian restaurant, R. Thomas, and therefore they were not cooked with bacon grease.) They were “overcooked” and grayish-green, but it turns out this just makes them tender and extra yummy.
Ok, lesson learned. So I’ve been experimenting, and my best effort yet was last night. I won’t include a picture because collard greens are seriously unattractive food, visually speaking.
Wash & chop a big bunch of collard greens.
Mince 1 small onion.
Heat 2-3 Tb peanut oil in a wok.
Add 2 Tb untoasted sesame seeds and 2-3 small or 1 large dried chili.
As seeds start to brown, add onion. Cook till onion starts to brown.
Add greens. Cover, stir occasionally. Add a little water.
When greens have gone past the cheerful green color and into the gloomy shades, add 2 Tb or so of soy sauce and a squirt of barbecue sauce.
Cook a while longer, till really tender (add water if necessary to keep from sticking).
Add more salt & pepper if necessary, and squirt on some lemon juice before serving.
We topped the greens with some re-heated West African-style peanut sauce from earlier in the week.
And overall it was a surprisingly convincing West Indian meal: Sweet potato curry roti, curried corn, and these greens, with Indian chutneys & pickles on the side. Reminded me of Bed-Stuy.