Northern made, southern grown

Sundays are for church, breakfast at Mary’s Market, and grocery shopping. My grocery of choice is locally-owned Woodman’s for their broad selection, but I found last Sunday that their selection isn’t broad enough in one particular category: dark, leafy greens and more specifically, collard greens. Next stop, Valli Produce, our Mecca of international delights and produce galore!

Not only did Valli have collard greens, but they had my new favorite brand!

Since I had picked up Pecan oil in Georgia and since my friend Hillary had shared a jar of her sweetly hot pepper jelly, I now had the critical ingredients for the Baker Farms recipe Chef Holly had prepared in the Georgia Grown booth at Sunbelt Ag Expo:

And here’s the recipe for Georgia Grown’s Pepper Jelly Vinaigrette:

Both recipes are easy, but you have to plan ahead on prepping the greens because they need a lot of chill time to tenderize. Otherwise, the steps are easy!

First, clean the collards by washing them and cutting them in half lengthwise while removing the stems. Stack up several leaf halves, roll them up, and chop them.

Using this technique (which I learned at Disney Institute’s Culinary Challenge while chopping basil for a fierce Bruschetta competition), you’ll quickly end up with a lush bowl of yummy greeness.

Next step, douse them with the oil, salt, and pepper and massage them to start the tenderizing process.

Cover the bowl and stash the greens in the fridge for a long, cold nap. I prepped these greens the night before, which allowed me to sneak out a few for my lunch and save the bulk of them for dinner.

For the final prep, simply add the onions (sweet Vidalia’s of course!), mix up the dressing…

… and serve!

Collard greens pair nicely with oven-baked, paprika and cayenne-spiced chicken wings and a bright Chardonnay.

Bon appetit!