Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Is Anything Better Than Biscuits and Gravy!?!

The answer to that question is yes: Biscuits, Gravy AND Smoky Collard Greens!

I've been super under the weather lately. So please excuse my tardiness.

We got home from a long drive on Sunday and I was feeling super tired and wonky and not in the mood for anything. Until I thought of biscuits and gravy. And collards. OMGYES.

So I cooked up a batch of the collards (and biscuits and gravy) from my cooking class the other night. Verdict: Complete, freaking awesomeness. The instructor was totally anti-liquid smoke (I'm fine with it, but definitely willing to experiment). So instead she uses smoked paprika and chipotle in adobo to lend a smoky and a tinge of spicy elements to the greens. But the real, over the top trick to this recipe? Molasses. Black-strap molasses. Yes, I said molasses.

I forgot to ask the instructor for her permission to post this, but I'm pretty sure she's cool with it. It's her recipe, not mine!

Miss D's Smokin' Collards
by Dawnula Koukol
Serves 4-6, Prep time: 30 minutes Cooking time: 45 min-1 1/2 hrs
  • 1/2 C olive oil
  • 3 C chopped yellow onion (about 2 onions)
  • 6 oz or 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 T garlic, sliced
  • 1 T chipotle in adobo
  • 2 1/2 T smoked paprika, divided in half
  • 1/4 C apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 3/4 C vegetable stock
  • 4 T molasses (black-strap)
  • 5 lbs (or about 4 bunches) collards, cleaned, stemmed and chopped
In a large stockpot, heat oil on medium. Add the onions and mushrooms, saute for about 6 or 7 minutes or until the onions are wilted. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the chipotle, half of the paprika, vinegar, soy sauce, vegetable stock and molasses.

Stir in the greens, a third at a time, pressing the greens down as they start to wilt. Cook the greens, covered, for about 45 minutes. Ad the last half of the smoked paprika, salt and pepper and cook for another 5-10 minutes.
I halved the recipe with mucho success. In fact, I only had 1 bunch of collards when I made this, so I cooked it as stated, but then added a bunch of cleaned/stemmed/chopped kale when I added the last of the smoke paprika - because kale doesn't need to cook nearly as long as collards do. It worked really well!

Try this recipe - it is soooooo good! The smokiness, the sweet of the molasses, the savory mushrooms and the pieces of sliced garlic - it's just tooooo gooood! And I'll have you know that I ate this meal combo for three meals straight - and would have kept going but ran out of leftovers. And I want it again. NOW! Alas, too many other vegetables to deal with in the fridge right now. Why do you taunt me, cabbage, parsnips and cauliflower?! Why must you aggravate me arugula?! Blarg!

Oh yeah, and in order to try to tame my overabundance of leeks (?!) last night I whipped up a quick simple batch of Potato Leek Soup. I used Mark Bittman's recipe, cuz I lurve him. We also had some garlic toast to dip. YUM!


Bex said...

My initial answer was "Hell no!" but you have proven me wrong and I will try these collards. They sound yum.

allularpunk said...

want! all of it. want.

Jes said...

Hell yes!!! I'm a biscuit and gravy fanatic and collards too?? Yum! I tend to use chipotle adobo instead of liquid smoke--I like the paprika and molasses addition!

carrie said...

Oh man, those collards sound out of this world, and something that my not too keen on green hubby might actually get into! I'll be trying those for sure!!

jessy said...

i am always looking for ways to cook collards - and this is just perfect, Chessa! thank you! and i FINALLY found some smoke paprika (seriously, it took forever to locate that stuff) - so i've got no excuse not to make these. oh, and i ♥ your addition of kale, too! the collards look freak'n AMAZING - and biscuits 'n gravy - i'm swoooooooning! mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! i think your potato 'n leek soup looks soooo wonderful - and garlic toast?! yes please - i would love some! thanks! ahahahahaa! :)

you know something is good when you eat it that much - that's awesome! and i can't wait to see what you do with that pesky arugula - and especially those parsnips. superw00t!

Chessa said...

bex - they are sooo good! Try them, you'll see!

allularpunk - make it! eat it! good.

jes - yeah, the molasses addition is sheer genius, and I never would have come up with it on my own. So! Good!

carrie - i reallllly hope your hubby likes them! I was kind of greens averse for a long time, but it's really that I had never had them. These are fab. A little spicy, a little sweet, savory, I could go on and on.

jessy - I know, seriously, why is smoked paprika so hard to find!?! What with Rachel Ray practically making it required for every recipe she makes, you'd think people would be clamoring for it! I had to buy it in the special spice market here at Pike Place Market - I thought for sure my co-op would have it in bulk, but no(!?!).

oh and the arugula? into the salad spinner with the lettuce it went. Oh well. ;)

Bethany said...

you're totally pumping me up for this class.

I heard in one of the classes that I took that people are using some sort of smoky tea instead of liquid smoke. I think it's this kind.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Oooh, that sounds good!

Heather said...

Just found your blog and it's great! The smokey collards sound awesome - is that 3/4 *cup* of veggie stock? I'm guessing so. Thanks!

Bethany said...

I took the class tonight. YUMMMMMMMM! Everything was fantastic. I'm totally making all of this stuff as soon as MoFo is over -- only because I already have the rest of this week planned out.