July Recipe – Lindsay’s stuffed Collards
“We are blessed to have a plethora of local greens popping up over here in Jefferson County. Corona Farms of Port Townsend boasts some lovely, dark & chewy collard greens just screaming to be stuffed! In this recipe the collard greens act somewhat like a tortilla, providing a delicious wrap for the stuffing.”
serves 4 as a main dish, 8 as an appetizer
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STUFFED CORONA FARM COLLARDS with roasted bell pepper, saffron and basil cream sauce
Ingredients (for the stuffed collards):
- 2 cups cooked brown rice
- Coarse sea salt
- 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ cup finely diced onion
- ½ cup grated carrot
- ½ cup raisins
- ½ cup finely chopped white mushrooms
- 1/3 cup pine nuts
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped sage
- 2 cups fresh sourdough bread crumbs
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
- Fresh ground pepper
- 1 bunch = 8 to 12 unblemished collard leaves
Ingredients (for the cream sauce):
- 3 large red bell peppers
- 1/8 – ¼ teaspoon saffron threads
- ½ cup hot water
- 1 cup sliced cherry tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium red onion, finely diced
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- Handful of basil leaves, finely sliced
- 1 cup organic half and half
- Salt to taste
- While brown rice is cooking, go ahead and start roasting your bell peppers in the oven under broil (I like to put them on a foil covered cookie sheet) until they are well blistered and blackened…rotate and turn them often.
- Cover saffron threads with ½ cup of hot water and set aside.
- When peppers are done, place them in a brown bag and roll shut, set aside for 15 minutes, then discard the seeds and skin. Dice the peppers and put aside in a bowl.
- Warm the oil for the collard recipe in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add onion and sauté for 5 minutes; add carrots, raisins, mushrooms, pine nuts and sage. Sauté another 6-8 minutes.
- In large mixing bowl, combine bread crumbs with cheese, cooked rice and cooked vegetables. Season with salt and pepper.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 2 tablespoons salt and collards; cook uncovered for 3-4 minutes until bright green. Drain and gently lay flat and blot dry with a clean towel.
- Place ¼ cup of the stuffing into the center of each collard leaf. Fold the sides towards the center and roll to form neat packages. Repeat until all are stuffed. Set aside and cover with a towel.
- Proceed with making the cream sauce.
- Warm oil in a wide skillet and add red onion. Sauté over medium high heat for 3-5 minutes, then add garlic, saffron in water and half the basil. Continue to cook until onions are soft, then add peppers, tomatoes and half and half…simmer until thickened, about 15 minutes or so. Season to taste
- Using a large enough baking dish to accommodate the stuffed collards in a single layer, pour 3 cups of the cream sauce into the dish. Snuggly nest the rolled collards into the dish, and then top with the remaining sauce. Cover dish with foil, shiny side down and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 20 – 30 minutes.
- The dish is complete in itself and really only needs to be served with a good wine such as our local Whidbey Island White. It being July, a simple (and hard-to-beat) desert would be local raspberries and strawberries served over vanilla ice cream. If you want to add a little decadent kick to this dessert, drizzle the berries and ice cream with Finnriver’s Black Current or Blueberry Wine which they mix with apple brandy. Enjoy!