We eat kale so often at our house, I sometimes forget about collard greens. But this weekend when I saw collards at Nash's booth at the farmers' market, I knew I had my recipe for the week. Well maybe not the recipe but at least I had the main ingredient. I just wasn't sure what the remaining ingredients were yet. I knew I'd wanted something different than the usual standbys if I wanted to break out of my kitchen rut.
While I was looking through this book that I got at the library, I found the perfect recipe
Let me put a plug in for this book. The recipes are dairy- and meat-free, they're easy-to-make, and many of them have unique twists. Broccoli Calazones and Hearty Chili Spuds were a couple of my favorites. In fact, I flagged so many recipes in this book with little post-it notes, I had to put this book on my must-buy book list.
You can check out author Jennifer McCann's vegan lunch box blog here for more good lunch recipes. She's a bit behind in posting but the blog and book offer so many delightful ideas for kids, it made me smile thinking I'd gotten the Vegan Lunch Box book for me. I'm a big sucker for presentation and the cute divisions in the lunch box on the front cover made me pick up this book--I want one of those lunch boxes!
Another product I want to mention here is the fabulous olive oil that I've been using on everything. Spanish olive oils have been winning awards lately so it's about time one of these oils topped the charts. Unlike some extra-virgin olive oils, you can cook with these oils. I've used Amarga Y Pica on roasted vegetables in a 375F. oven without any damage to the oil. And I've also used it in salad dressings.
The flavor of each oil (below) is slightly different. The bottle on the left, simply called Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, below that label are the words "cold pressed." This oil has a stronger flavor than the other oil and I doubt I would cook with this oil since it probably has a lower smoke point. The two other oils also have superior flavors and you can cook with them. (Generally if I'm cooking something that requires a higher temperature, I use canola oil, so I'm really excited about an olive oil that I can use on roasted veggies.
There's a use for each oil. Everyone has their favorite.
|Somebody knows how to spot the true cold-pressed oil without even opening the bottle!|
For this recipe, I slid the leaves off the middle stems and as I was about to toss the stems onto the compost heap, I hesitated. Americans are guilty of wasting way too much food. So I tucked those stems into a bag and I'm planning on slicing them for a noodle dish tonight. I'll let you know how that goes, but I'm determined to buy less and use more of my vegetables this year.
Another thing you can do with a side dish like this is to use it as a filling for tortilla roll-ups, or blend it with rice or quinoa and add chunks of marinated tofu or other protein.
Linda's Collard Greens Revisited
Toast the sunflower seeds in the oven at 350F for about eight minutes or in a frying pan, stirring over medium heat until they brown, about five minutes.
1 large bunch of collard greens, rinsed well, hard stems removed
2 to 4 tablespoons prepared Italian salad dressing
1 tablespoon chopped Mama Lil's Peppers
2 tablespoons chopped kalamata olives
2 tablespoons toasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds
Wash leaves and remove from middle stem by pushing the leaves off. Gather leaves and roll in a chiffonade and slice leaves in thin strips. Turn the cut leaves and chop again.
Steam the leaves until fork tender--2 to 3 minutes at the most. Drain. Toss with Italian salad dressing, Mama Lil's Peppers and kalamata olives. Garnish with sunflower seeds.