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Poor Girl Gourmet
by Amy McCoy
Serves 4, $5.00 or less


• 1 bunch collard greens (approximately 1¼ pounds)
• 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
• 5 cloves roasted garlic
• 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
• Kosher salt
• Freshly ground black pepper


1. Collard greens and their kale brethren require that their woody stems be removed prior to cooking. First, be certain to wash the leaves well, as they grow close to the ground and soil can be attached to them. Then cut the stems from the center of each leaf. Once the leaves are trimmed, cut them crosswise into 1/2-inch strips.

2. Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat, then add the roasted garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the collard greens and the crushed red pepper flakes and cook until all of the leaves are wilted, stirring frequently, 13 to 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve forth this stalwart of Southern cuisine that also just happened to be a favorite of southern European antiquity. So I hear, anyway.

Seasonal Tip: Both collards and kale are crops that fare well in the autumn, and their flavor benefits, even, from a bit of crisp air and frost. Therefore, you will find them plentiful late in the harvest season, though both are available year-round.

ESTIMATED COST FOR FOUR: $3.15. The olive oil costs 36¢. The roasted garlic costs approximately 27¢. One bunch of collard greens costs $2.49 just about anywhere you go—grocery store, farm stand, or farmers market, so be sure to spread some love around to your local growers if you have the chance—and the crushed red pepper flakes will be added in at 3¢.


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