(this ain't your mama's collard recipe)
If you like Creamed Spinach, you will equally like Creamed Collards. I have made creamed-style collards for many years, and even the most serious of anti-collard eatin' Yanks who have ventured below the Mason Dixie line can manage to eat these.
(You can always fib and say its creamed kale, or creamed parsley, or something "green" other than collards. LOL)
I had a recipe I experimented with for years, and about 2 years ago I ran across a similar recipe that called for nutmeg. Nutmeg? I thought "it just can't be!" But sure enough, it added the perfect taste that seemed to finish the dish. Nutmeg and collards? Who knew?
You can easily substitute spinach or kale...but collards are packed with good nutrients, and they are readily available in most grocery stores.
DO NOT use those nasty canned collards.
Any Southerner worth their weight in grits would have a hissy fit (have you ever seen a Southerner pitch a hissy fit? NOT a pretty site!) if you served them canned collard greens. No, no, no - that just won't do. Now I do admit that even I like to save myself some time and ease. I like to use the fresh, de-stemmed, de-dirted, pre-cut bagged collard greens available in the veggie section.
(ssshhhh...please don't tell my mama!) :-)
Here is my recipe....hope you enjoy!
Creamed Collard Greens
4 lbs. collard greens, de-stemmed and cut into larger pieces
(I know it sounds like a lot, but just like spinach they cook down)
8 strips bacon,
4 slices sliced into 1" pieces; 4 slices left whole
2 tbs. unsalted butter
1 medium onion, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, chopped finely
2 cups heavy whipping cream
pinch of nutmeg
Salt and Pepper to taste
(opt) 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Using a large stockpot, fill halfway with water and add the 4 slices of whole bacon strips. Bring to a boil. Add fresh collard greens into the boiling water a little at a time, pushing them down into the water with a wooden spoon. Allow the water to return bacl to a boil, as adding the collards will slow this process. Cook the greens until they are fork tender, about 10-15 minutes. Remove pot from heat. Remove cooked greens from hot water and dunk them in a bath of ice water to stop the cooking process, otherwise they will get mushy.
While greens are cooking, pre-heat a skillet and add 1" cut slices of bacon. Cook to a crisp and remove from skillet, reserving bacon drippings and draining on a paper towel. Add onions. Just before onions are done, add garlic. Cook both until transparent. Drain onions and garlic on a paper towel. Drain bacon drippings from pan. Add cooked onions and garlic back into the pan, add cream and butter, and cooked greens. Simmer on low until cream is reduced to about half the amount, stirring occasionally, about 3-5 minutes. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper. If you like a little kick, add a dash (or two) of hot sauce. Pour into a serving dish, sprinkle generously with cheese (opt) and crumbled, cooked bacon.
This dish should only take about 30-35 minutes to prepare, and should be served hot. This makes about 8-12 servings...or less if you sit at the table with my family. :-)
Happy Collard Eating...Barb
ps - I have one final recipe to share. My ultimate, homemade Chocolate Hazelnut Sour Cream Frosting. It's so easy will you laugh, but its so good you will cry! If you want any of the other recipes from my menu, just let me know and I can post those, too.