Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Ethiopian-Inspired Collard Greens

We went out for Ethiopian food on Valentine's Day, and the greens we ordered were so compelling that we decided to try making them at home. The key ingredient for Ethiopian flavor is a spice mix called berbere. If you don't have access to an Ethiopian market (East Bay folks, I recommend this one, since you can also knock out any Indian/Middle Eastern/miscellaneous other ingredient shopping you need to do), you can either buy berbere online or make your own. The red mixture shown next to the collards is shiro, and we served both the shiro and the collards with some store-bought injera, although this would also be delicious over rice or with parathas.

1 tablespoon butter or canola oil
1/2 an onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, peeled but left whole
1 bunch collard greens, finely chopped
1 teaspoon berbere
1 cup water
salt to taste

Heat the oil or butter over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-7 minutes, until translucent and starting to brown. Stir in berbere, saute for 30 seconds to coat onions, then add collard greens and saute a quick minute. Pour in water and salt and simmer for about 15 minutes, until almost all of the water has evaporated. Transfer mixture to a blender or food processor and pulse until you have a thick puree. If your greens are on the bitter side, add a little more salt.


Lea and Zak said...

Thanks for posting. Made the berbere for this and it turned out wonderfully!

Yoni said...

haha I heart kale too... we once did a night of performance art live downtown gainesville based entirely on kale... no joke... SO my experience w/ Kale is that berbere is not really a critical seasoning (for spicey lentil dishes it is)- it is the spiced oil or butter that enhances the awesomeness of the kale... "Ethiopian-inspired Cooking; vegetarian specialties" by Ian Finn has a good recipe for it, as elsewhere can be found too.. google or else just simmer handfuls of fresh basil, oregano, some onion, ginger, and garlic in oil for 5 minutes, then strain; can also add fenugreek and cardamom pinched too...