Mediterranean Collard Greens

I made this one up myself a few years ago. Collard greens flavored with some of the ingredients that make moussaka, my absolute favorite Greek dish, so delicious.

Ingredients:

1 small or 2 large bunches of collard greens (or 1 bag of pre washed and cut greens)         1 medium onion                                                                                                                   1 TBSP olive or other oil                                                                                                     1 can diced tomatoes                                                                                                      1/4 cup raisins or currants                                                                                                  1/4 cup red wine OR 1 tsp red wine vinegar + 1 tsp honey                                                  1/4 – 1 whole tsp sweet + hot spice mix such as berbere, ras el hanout, baharat            OR a quick shake (1/8 tsp if you must measure) of ginger, cloves, allspice, cinnamon, coriander (as many of these as you have in your pantry – leave out whatever you don’t have) and cayenne pepper                                                                                                   salt and pepper to taste

Method:

1. Wash greens thoroughly and shake off excess water. Cut or tear thick stems from leaves (you can leave the stem where it begins to get thinner towards the top half of the leaf). Stack the leaves on top of one another and cut or tear into bite sized pieces or ribbons.

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2. Cut the onion into half-rings. Heat a large, deep skillet or pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and sauté onions until they begin to soften and brown slightly.

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3. Add collards into the pot or skillet, tossing gently to coat with oil. If they will not all fit easily, add as many as you can and cover the pan for a few minutes. Once the greens have begun to wilt you should have room to add the rest.

4. Drain the tomatoes, but not thoroughly, as a little tomato juice is nice here. Mix in the remaining ingredients, adding a splash of water if necessary. Start with about a quarter cup. You just need enough to keep everything from sticking.

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Berbere is hot! A little goes a long way.

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This is about right – not soupy, but enough water to keep it from sticking or burning.

5. Cover the pot and cook, stirring every 10 minutes and adding more water if necessary, until the greens are as soft as you like them. Some people like them still bright green with a little chew to them (cook about 15 minutes). Some people like them cooked until they are super soft and dark, dark green (may take 45 minutes to 1 hour). I like them somewhere in between (20-30 minutes is about perfect.)

6. Taste before serving and adjust seasonings if necessary. Enjoy!

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