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Appetizers, Vegetarian

Collard squares

Collard squares
Los Angeles Times

When Mario Batali recently blogged about blowing off a family potluck dinner, only a couple of eyebrows were raised in cyberspace. Apparently potlucks have such a dreary reputation that only the most cynical observer could fault him for holding off ... Read more

Total time: About 1 1/2 hours | Serves 12
  • 2 large bunches collard greens
  • 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper flakes
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter plus extra for the baking dish
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 pound shiitakes, stems removed, caps finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon tamari or soy sauce
  • 8 large eggs
  • 8 ounces Comte or Gruyere cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs

Step 1Remove the tough stems from the greens and wash the leaves well in several changes of cold water. Place them in a large pot and add the hot pepper flakes and 1 teaspoon salt. Add water to cover by several inches and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until the greens are very tender, about 1 hour. Drain well and cool slightly, then squeeze dry and finely chop.

Step 2While the collards are cooking, melt the butter in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, sprinkle lightly with one-fourth teaspoon salt and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add the shiitakes and the tamari and saute until they are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool slightly.

Step 3Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

Step 4Combine the collards and shiitakes in a bowl. Add the eggs, cheese and bread crumbs and mix well. Spread into the prepared pan. Bake 30 minutes. Cut into squares to serve hot or at room temperature.


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