Collards are full of natural antioxidants and vitamins. Plus, they are low in calories. Traditionally, collards are braised and simmered within an inch of being edible and, well, that's got to stop. The goal is to serve the greens raw so that they're thought of as something healthy and delicious, rather than something that's always combined with bacon fat and cooked down. Simply balance the natural bitterness of collard greens with a bright, sweet and spicy dressing for a delicious change.
Coconut dressing (makes about 2 cups)
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 shallots, chopped
- 1/4 cup canned chipotles in adobo
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
- 3 cups shredded collard greens
- 1 red onion, diced
- 1 English cucumber, unpeeled and sliced into half-moons
- 1/4 cup coconut dressing (recipe above)
- 1/4 cup adzuki red beans
- Candied cashews
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the coconut dressing:
1. In a small, dry saute pan, add the cumin seeds and toast over medium heat until fragrant, 3-5 minutes.
2. In a blender, add the toasted cumin seeds and the remaining ingredients. Blend until smooth.
3. Store in a covered nonreactive container. Refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.
For the salad:
In a large bowl, toss the greens, onion and cucumber with 1/4 cup of the dressing, which should be just enough to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Top the salad with the beans and candied cashews.