What are Collards?

Collards
Collards

Collards are a farmer’s market staple. They are a nutrition power house and are more versatile than you would think.

They are a part of the same species as cabbage and kale.

One thing to note is that the leaves can be huge. This provides lots of uses that curly kale does not.

Common thinking is that collards need to be cooked. But, this is not true. They can be eaten cooked or raw.

If eaten raw, they can have a bit of a bitter taste to them. This can be offset by the flavours you pair it with (lemon, vinegar, etc.)

Storage:

  • There is no need to wash the leaves before storing. Giving them a quick shake will help dislodge loose dirt and any insect hitchhikers.
  • Place in the fridge within a plastic bag or container with a sheet of paper towel to absorb excess moisture.
  • Do not cut the leaves off until you are ready to use them.
  • Heads will store well for 4 – 5 days in the fridge.

Both the stems and leaves are edible. If you find the stems too tough, go ahead and de-stem them just like with kale.

Freezing

Collard greens can be frozen and stored for future use.

  • Raw collards do not freeze well. They need to be blanched first.
  • Wash the collards very well before blanching.
  • Trim the tougher stems off or de-stem completely.
  • Blanch in boiling water for 3 – 4 minutes. Be sure to place in an ice bath after boiling to shock and stop the cooking process.
  • Once blanched, store in an airtight freezer-safe bag or container.
  • Label with the name and date.

Uses For Collards

Collards can be used in so many dishes:

  • Shred and use it raw in coleslaw. If you want more tender raw leaves, message them like you do with kale.
  • Cut or shred and use it raw in other green salads.
  • Add to stir-fries, soups, stews.
  • Steam or braise them.
  • The whole leaves can be used raw as wraps and then eaten raw or steamed.

Do you love collards? Let us know how you like to eat or prepare it.

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