July 24th, 2009:

Some people find it hard to get used to cooking with these thick green leaves, which take so much more time to cook than spinach, chard, or mustards. They also require a bit of oil in the pan if you’re sauteeing them, unlike their waterier counterparts (again, like spinach).

Pavich Vegetables from The Farmhouse Cookbook (6 servings):

  • 4 large Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into eighths
  • 2 t. salt
  • 1 large bunch collard greens or kale, stems removed (about 15 oz. leaves), rinsed and coarsely chopped
  • 6 T. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1/2 t. dried red pepper flakes

1) Place the potatoes in a large saucepan or stockpot, and just cover with water. Add the salt, stir, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and boil the potatoes gently, partially covered, until they are nearly tender but still firm in the center, about 12 minutes. Add the greens, cover the pot, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have cooked down and turned dark green, about 15 minutes. The potatoes will be thoroughly cooked and a bit soft at the edges.

2) While the potatoes and greens are cooking, place the oil and the garlic in a small heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, and cook until the garlic turns a very pale gold. Remove from the heat, stir in the hot pepper flakes, and set aside.

3) When the potatoes and greens are cooked, transfer them to a warmed serving bowl, with any remaining cooking liquid, and either pour the garlic mixture over all, or serve it on the side.

June 24th, 2010:

There are many wonderful things to do with kale – truly! Here’s just one of them, from a friend of ours calling himself King Nutria Silverback:

Steam a ‘buttload of Kale’ – (that’s a technical term), just until the stem parts begin to get soft.
Meanwhile, saute a chopped yellow onion in more butter than you should. Toss the butter/onion mixture with the soft Kale and move this into your favorite casserole dish.  Cover this with a serious amount of Parmesan and brown it off under the broiler.  Stand back and receive rave reviews.

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