Last week I showed up to teach my childbirth class raving about a delicious collard green recipe I made for dinner that night. My husband and I virtually inhaled an entire head of collard greens in two minutes flat. I will admit, this behavior was quite shocking for both of us. Leafy greens have not been a strongpoint at our dinner table recently. Errrrrr, I mean, ever.
In class that evening, the topic was prenatal nutrition. I mentioned the amazing properties of collard greens and the benefits for pregnant women and their growing babies. When discussing a healthy and well-balanced diet in pregnancy, I talked on the topic of "Eating Smart". The bottom line is if you choose your foods wisely you will pack the most powerful punch into each meal. This way you get all of your essential nutrients without turning eating into a chore.
Fresh cooked collard greens contain the following essential nutrients:
Calcium & Magnesium — Essential to proper functioning of muscle contractions. (Hello, Uterus!)
Potassium — Is known to relieve pregnancy related muscle cramps. (Good Evening, Charlie Horse!)
Folate — Reduces the risk of anemia for the mother & supports rapid growth of the placenta and fetus. (Hello, Healthy Little One)
Vitamin C — Fights infection and helps to build a healthy placenta. (Welcome, Most Amazing Temporary Organ in the Human Body!)
Vitamin A — Contributes to healthy skin and mucus membranes. (Hello, Amniotic Sac!)
Choline — Helps fetal brain cells to develop properly. (Ahhh, Genius!)
Not only do collard greens pack a punch, but the coconut milk in this dish offers quite a bit of benefit as well. Coconut milk contains healthy fats and is known to be anti-carcinogenic, anti-bacterial, anti-microbial and anti-viral.
Good heavens! You have to try this recipe. Go for the organic greens at the market and prepare them as soon as possible. The collard greens will turn bitter if left to sit in the refrigerator too long. Also worthy to note, the smaller the leaf on the collard green, the milder the flavor.
Let's get started...
Braised Collard Greens with Coconut Milk
Prep Time: approximately 20 minutes
1 TBS grapeseed oil (or olive oil)
1 bunch collard greens, torn into pieces away from the stem
1/2 small yellow onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 TBS fresh squeezed lemon juice
Salt & fresh ground black pepper, to taste
The Preparation Method:
Bring a large pot of water to boil.
Wash the leaves of the greens from all dirt and sand. Wash well. Gritty greens are never very tasty.
Add the well-drained collard greens. Gently salt and cook about 2 minutes, stirring the entire time.
Add 1/2 cup coconut milk and 1/2 TBS lemon juice. Stir well and gently simmer about 5 minutes or until tender.
Season with salt and pepper to your liking. Serve hot or cold.
Oh boy, this sounds good!
Yo-Yo Ma, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer & Chris Thile — Attaboy (Live)