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Old 11-22-2016, 11:01 AM   #1
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Question Beyond bitter collard greens!!!

I have cooked some Collard greens for Thanksgiving and they are seriously bitter. I have added a teaspoon of brown sugar - still awfully bitter. Any ideas???

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Old 11-22-2016, 11:08 AM   #2
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How did you cook them?

In my experience, it helps to cook some of the more bitter varieties of greens (collards, mustard, etc.) with salt and fat to balance the strong flavor. Personally, I like to cook them with smoked ham hocks. Lemon juice helps as well.
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Old 11-22-2016, 11:13 AM   #3
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I cooked them with ham hocks in water and veg broth with onion and garlic. I added a little vinegar. Should I maybe add some bacon and a little more brown sugar. I'd hate to throw them out.
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Old 11-22-2016, 11:29 AM   #4
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I doubt this will work after cooking, but they say here in the South that collards sweeten when they're frozen. So if you're raising them, don't harvest till after a frost or if you buy them fresh from a market, put them in the freezer for a couple days before cooking.

I don't make collards so I don't know for sure, but that's what I hear
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Old 11-22-2016, 11:35 AM   #5
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Next time I think I will blanch and drain before cooking. But for now, do you think draining the liquid and adding more broth and bacon and heating would do it? My friend used to make them and I loved them but she is gone now and her secret recipe went with her.
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Old 11-22-2016, 11:48 AM   #6
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Did you cook the garlic a bit first? That can also add to an unpleasant flavour.

I would definitely drain and add bacon, and then hit it with some honey and lime.
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Old 11-22-2016, 11:56 AM   #7
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Thanks buckytom, I actually just crushed some garlic and added to everything.I hate losing the potlikker. that's the best part with cornbread but it's just too bitter.
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Old 11-22-2016, 12:06 PM   #8
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How much did you cook? When I cook them, I use a lot more than a teaspoon of brown sugar or molasses for a good size bunch for 3-4 servings, more like a couple of tablespoons plus maybe a 1/4 to a 1/3 of a pound of bacon.
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Old 11-22-2016, 12:18 PM   #9
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How long did you cook them?
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Old 11-22-2016, 12:34 PM   #10
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I cooked on low for 4 hours
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Old 11-22-2016, 02:39 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
I doubt this will work after cooking, but they say here in the South that collards sweeten when they're frozen. So if you're raising them, don't harvest till after a frost or if you buy them fresh from a market, put them in the freezer for a couple days before cooking.

I don't make collards so I don't know for sure, but that's what I hear
Ive had that experience with Kale.
I never liked kale all that much, so let it kinda grow out in the garden. But one day, after a few frosts , it was still kicking, so i decided to taste it again, and it was much better after the frost than before. Could have been coincidence.

I never had luck cooking collards, always too tough and bitter for me. I even grew them too. They grew very well, but even the fresh ones weren't that great, so haven't eaten them since.
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Old 11-22-2016, 03:54 PM   #12
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To remove bitterness, sugar doesnt work, instead use salt. Yes salt is the magic.
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Old 11-22-2016, 05:52 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
I doubt this will work after cooking, but they say here in the South that collards sweeten when they're frozen. So if you're raising them, don't harvest till after a frost or if you buy them fresh from a market, put them in the freezer for a couple days before cooking.

I don't make collards so I don't know for sure, but that's what I hear
That's why we put the kale in the freezer. Kale grows in Ontario until it snows. Definitely after the first frost, the kale is sweeter. I usually put kale in the freezer for about 30 minutes to sweeten it. It would make sense to do the same with collards. I can't eat mustard greens--they don't agree with me.
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Old 11-22-2016, 08:36 PM   #14
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I've nevery had the late harvest bitterness with heavy greens like collards, just with lettuces. I think just not enough other stuff was used and/or the variety. I highly recommendd Emeril's recipe. I just eyeball it now that I've made it many times.
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