Monday, March 22, 2010

Stuffed Collard Greens

Happy Spring everyone! Even though it doesn't feel like it, spring is officially here. This makes me very happy, and I can put up with the cold much easier when I know it won't last much longer. Since it did turn cold here again, I wanted something warm and filling. Stuffed cabbage sounded good, but loose collard leaves are so much easier to work with. So I stuffed those instead.
Collards are part of the brassica family, nutritional superstars and tasty to boot. Because the leaves are all different sizes, the filling and leaves do not always match up, and you may be left with a little of one or the other.

Stuffed Collard Greens  

1 c. brown rice
2 carrots, finely diced
6 stalks celery, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small red onion, finely diced
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 bunches collard greens, washed, stems cut off
3 c. tomato sauce (homemade or your favorite)

Combine brown rice, broth, carrot, celery, garlic, onion, oregano, basil, salt and pepper in rice cooker and cook according to your cooker's directions, or in stovetop pan and simmer covered, 40-45 min. till tender and all liquid is absorbed. 
 While rice is cooking, bring a pot of water to a boil, add collard greens and boil 4-5 min. till just tender- don't overcook. You want the leaves to bend easily for rolling, but not to tear easily or get mushy. You may have to do this in 2 batches. Remove, place in colander, and run under cold water to stop cooking.

When rice is ready, preheat oven to 350. Pour 1/2 c. of tomato sauce in bottom of roaster pan. Place a small mound of rice in center of each leaf, fold in sides and roll up. Place seam side down in roaster pan. Pour remaining tomato sauce over rolls, cover, and bake 30-40 min.

This dish is easily adapted to using leftovers- brown rice, quinoa, or barley, and any veggies you have hanging around in your fridge can be put to use for a very quick meal.


Andrea March 22, 2010 at 2:25 PM  

This looks terrific. I was looking for an easier version of stuffed cabbage, and considered using either collards or kale. Now I think I'll go with collards.

VivaciousVegan March 22, 2010 at 10:15 PM  

looks, delish! as always!!!

janet March 23, 2010 at 7:59 AM  

Andrea, we really enjoyed the collards, but I like your idea of using kale, I would enjoy that also. It was so much easier than using cabbage!

VivaciousVegan, thanks so much!

Oraphan March 23, 2010 at 11:31 PM  

This looks incredibly delicious! I've never cooked anything like this before, it sounds like a lot of work to me but I love the idea of using brown rice and collard greens = healthy and yummy!

Claudia March 24, 2010 at 10:48 AM  

I love this. In fact, I will make this. Grand idea using the collard greens.

janet March 24, 2010 at 12:54 PM  

Oraphan, thanks, it sounds like more work than it actually is, it goes together pretty quickly.

Claudia, thanks, using the collards made it much faster. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Vicki April 16, 2010 at 7:02 AM  

Such great colors in that picture. I love stuffed cabbage but since we don't have a lot of brassica fans in the house I don't usually buy whole heads of cabbage. I will have to try this one.

PS: Thanks for the kind words last fall - I'm afraid I let the blog languish for a while though it's on its way back.

janet April 18, 2010 at 12:26 PM  

Vicki, thanks. I hope you enjoy this as we did. I'm glad you are coming back to blogging, I enjoyed reading yours!

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