March 8, 2012

Spicy Sausage & Collards

I have no riveting story to share about how or why I made this. It is merely the creation of randomness that happened in my brain. And it also met all my cooking criteria for an Ideal Meal:

1) easy
2) healthy
3) tasty
4) cheap
5) contains greens


Spicy Sausage & Collards

1 large bunch collard greens
8 cups water
2 extra large sweet potatoes, cut into cubes
1 lb spicy chicken sausage*, cut into 1/2 thick coins
1 large sweet onion, chopped
1 package frozen okra
2 large garlic cloves
1 Tbsp course sea salt
2 Tbsp hot pepper sauce (I used Sriracha. Not the healthiest, but whatev. Share better suggestions below if ya got 'em)
4 Tbsp butter
cooked grain of choice: rice, quinoa, etc.

In a large pot, bring water, salt, diced garlic and hot sauce to a boil. Add collards and cook over medium-low heat for at least an hour.

  • Tip for cutting collards: see that huge, thick stem at the bottom?

  1. hold the bottom of the stem in one hand and slice the leaves right off with a sharp knife
  2. After the leaves are off the stem, pile them up and roll them up like you would a sleeping bag. Then slice  the roll-up into strips about 1 inch wide.)
While the collards are cooking, melt 2 Tbsp butter in a large pan**. Add onion and cook until soft. Add okra and saute for 5 minutes until soft. Add remaining butter and sausage and cook until browned and crispy.

When the collards are soft, take one strip out and chew it. It should break down easily in your mouth. If it doesn't, give it more time in the pot. If it's ready, add the sweet potatoes and simmer until they become soft when you poke them with a fork.

You should end up with two separate dishes like this:

Combine, serve over grain of choice and ENJOY!

*sausage: when buying meat, try to buy locally-sourced products--from farms and farmers who live as close to you as possible. Beware meat from large factory-farms. Watch the first 20 minutes of Food, Inc. the movie to better understand this.

**pan: ok, so I tried to use my stainless steel pan to sizzle up the okra and sausage. My best efforts couldn't make this happen and I don't know why. I succumbed to the teflon-covered pan and it worked perfectly. Use teflon-covered pots and pans rarely and with caution. We don't know what teflon is doing to our health.

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