It is indeed possible to make a vegetarian collard greens dish. As I’d mentioned last week, the vast majority of recipes for collards include a ham hock or two; some kind of smoky meat to cut the bitterness of the greens. Turns out sweet is just as good a complement as smoke.
I made this recipe almost as originally published (Collards, Golden Raisin, and Almond Saute), except I cut the olive oil down to 2 tablespoons from half a cup. Half a cup of oil to saute greens? It’s making me a little ill just thinking about it. Two tablespoons is more than enough. I also added a bagful of chopped arugula to my single bunch of collard greens.
My mom may be the only person I know that says she really likes braising greens, collards, and the like. I don’t mind them, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to eat them, either. This is a very accessible greens preparation because the sweetness of the raisins neutralizes any unpleasant bitterness from the vegetables. And there was plenty of the raisin and almond mixture to go around — I probably could have doubled the amount of arugula and collards that I used and still have had a nice, balanced dish.
Overall a very pretty, healthy, and easy dish. It was well-received at our Rosh Hashanah dinner Monday night.