A while back I posted a photograph of Collard Greens prepared Brazilian-style from Libra in Culver City. This got me thinking about the way cultural differences shape how someone prepares a dish.
Collards are a very healthy vegetable, as a rule.
I grew up eating collards Southern-style, as my family is originally from the Southern part of the USA. This basically consists of smothering the greens with some type of meat for flavoring. Usually the meat was (and still is, to a certain extent) pork. Some people use ham hocks, others use bacon fat or salt pork. Mark Bittman would not approve it for a Meatless Monday menu, but it is very tasty.
In the interests of good health, my family tends to serve them with a homemade tomato sauce or smothered with smoked turkey (necks or wings). The pork-flavored version is usually reserved for New Year's Day.
The Brazilian version, by contrast, is served as a side dish for feijoada, that yummy black bean and meat stew. I look forward to trying to prepare them in this style and I am researching recipes.
I look forward to eating some tasty greens!