Collard Greens

Photo Credit Laura Cabot

If you tour Maine’s farm stands right about now you will find a lot of root vegetables, potatoes, onions, baked goods and donuts….but most notably BRASSICAS.

This plant genus covers all things cabbage-y from Brussel sprouts, so impressive on their thick stalks, to broccolini and broccoli , mustard greens and the many variations of cauliflower…. to my personal favorite, the Collard Greens.

I love them so much that I grow my own. Revered in the Deep South they are wonderful stewed or long cooked with onion a piece of “side meat” which is a fatty cut like bacon, or cut into a chiffonade and blanched to an emerald green. A great side for pork ribs and a nice addition to a vegetable soup.

Collards come into their own after the first frost, which sweetens and tenderizes them making them perfect November fodder. I wait until the frost subsides from the leaves and harvest them in the afternoon for the evening meal. Eating “live” food is a particular joy!

Cook up some cornbread in a spider ( a large cast iron fry pan) and serve up a mess o’ greens with beans or ribs. You will be popular. Promise!