Collards (and probably greens in general) have an image problem to overcome. When people think of them, what generally comes to mind are tough leaves that have to be boiled for ages with salted pork fat of some kind. The most recent way we’ve been enjoying them is courtesy of Homesick Texan’s recipe for Not Your Grandma’s Collard Greens, as shown here.
Collard (pronounced KAHL-uhrd) greens are a non-head-forming member of the same species of plants that cabbage and broccoli are part of. They are large, dark colored, edible leaves that are best purchased when crisp and fresh. They require thorough washing and are prepared by first removing the very tough and often woody stem and then cutting the leaves down into smaller pieces. They really do seem to work best with a good boiling, but as referenced above, they don’t have to be full or pork fat (not that pork fat is bad, it just isn’t required), and you don’t have to cook the leaves till they lose all structure. They do take some time to cook (plan on at least 45-60 minutes), but once they’re on the stove, they don’t require a whole lot of attention.