Collard greens
Overview
 
Collard greens are various loose-leafed cultivar
Cultivar
A cultivar'Cultivar has two meanings as explained under Formal definition. When used in reference to a taxon, the word does not apply to an individual plant but to all those plants sharing the unique characteristics that define the cultivar. is a plant or group of plants selected for desirable...

s of Brassica oleracea
Brassica oleracea
Brassica oleracea, or wild cabbage, is a species of Brassica native to coastal southern and western Europe, where its tolerance of salt and lime and its intolerance of competition from other plants typically restrict its natural occurrence to limestone sea cliffs, like the chalk cliffs on both...

 (Acephala Group
Acephala Group
The Acephala Group is a cultivar group for the species Brassica oleracea. It includes the following:* kale* collard greens* spring greens...

), the same species as cabbage
Cabbage
Cabbage is a popular cultivar of the species Brassica oleracea Linne of the Family Brassicaceae and is a leafy green vegetable...

 and broccoli
Broccoli
Broccoli is a plant in the cabbage family, whose large flower head is used as a vegetable.-General:The word broccoli, from the Italian plural of , refers to "the flowering top of a cabbage"....

. The plant is grown for its large, dark-colored, edible leaves and as a garden ornamental, mainly in Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

, Portugal
Portugal
Portugal , officially the Portuguese Republic is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East. The Atlantic archipelagos of the...

, the southern United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, many parts of Africa
Africa
Africa is the world's second largest and second most populous continent, after Asia. At about 30.2 million km² including adjacent islands, it covers 6% of the Earth's total surface area and 20.4% of the total land area...

, Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, southern Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

, Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

, as well as in Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

 region of both India and Pakistan. They are classified in the same cultivar group
Cultivar
A cultivar'Cultivar has two meanings as explained under Formal definition. When used in reference to a taxon, the word does not apply to an individual plant but to all those plants sharing the unique characteristics that define the cultivar. is a plant or group of plants selected for desirable...

 as kale
Kale
Kale is very high in beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, lutein, zeaxanthin, and reasonably rich in calcium. Kale, as with broccoli and other brassicas, contains sulforaphane , a chemical with potent anti-cancer properties. Boiling decreases the level of sulforaphane; however, steaming,...

 and spring greens
Spring greens
Spring greens are a cultivar of Brassica oleracea in the cultivar Acephala Group, similar to kale, in which the central leaves do not form a head or form only a very loose one...

, to which they are genetically similar.
Encyclopedia
Collard greens are various loose-leafed cultivar
Cultivar
A cultivar'Cultivar has two meanings as explained under Formal definition. When used in reference to a taxon, the word does not apply to an individual plant but to all those plants sharing the unique characteristics that define the cultivar. is a plant or group of plants selected for desirable...

s of Brassica oleracea
Brassica oleracea
Brassica oleracea, or wild cabbage, is a species of Brassica native to coastal southern and western Europe, where its tolerance of salt and lime and its intolerance of competition from other plants typically restrict its natural occurrence to limestone sea cliffs, like the chalk cliffs on both...

 (Acephala Group
Acephala Group
The Acephala Group is a cultivar group for the species Brassica oleracea. It includes the following:* kale* collard greens* spring greens...

), the same species as cabbage
Cabbage
Cabbage is a popular cultivar of the species Brassica oleracea Linne of the Family Brassicaceae and is a leafy green vegetable...

 and broccoli
Broccoli
Broccoli is a plant in the cabbage family, whose large flower head is used as a vegetable.-General:The word broccoli, from the Italian plural of , refers to "the flowering top of a cabbage"....

. The plant is grown for its large, dark-colored, edible leaves and as a garden ornamental, mainly in Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

, Portugal
Portugal
Portugal , officially the Portuguese Republic is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East. The Atlantic archipelagos of the...

, the southern United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

, many parts of Africa
Africa
Africa is the world's second largest and second most populous continent, after Asia. At about 30.2 million km² including adjacent islands, it covers 6% of the Earth's total surface area and 20.4% of the total land area...

, Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, southern Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

, Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and in Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

, as well as in Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

 region of both India and Pakistan. They are classified in the same cultivar group
Cultivar
A cultivar'Cultivar has two meanings as explained under Formal definition. When used in reference to a taxon, the word does not apply to an individual plant but to all those plants sharing the unique characteristics that define the cultivar. is a plant or group of plants selected for desirable...

 as kale
Kale
Kale is very high in beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, lutein, zeaxanthin, and reasonably rich in calcium. Kale, as with broccoli and other brassicas, contains sulforaphane , a chemical with potent anti-cancer properties. Boiling decreases the level of sulforaphane; however, steaming,...

 and spring greens
Spring greens
Spring greens are a cultivar of Brassica oleracea in the cultivar Acephala Group, similar to kale, in which the central leaves do not form a head or form only a very loose one...

, to which they are genetically similar. The name "collard" is a shortened form of the word "colewort" (cabbage plant).

The plant is also called couve in Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

, couve-galega in Portugal
Portugal
Portugal , officially the Portuguese Republic is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East. The Atlantic archipelagos of the...

, kovi or kobi in Cape Verde, berza in Spanish
Spanish language
Spanish , also known as Castilian , is a Romance language in the Ibero-Romance group that evolved from several languages and dialects in central-northern Iberia around the 9th century and gradually spread with the expansion of the Kingdom of Castile into central and southern Iberia during the...

-speaking countries, raštika in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

 and Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

 and raštan in Montenegro
Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

 and Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

. In Kashmir, it is called haak. In Congo
Congo Basin
The Congo Basin is the sedimentary basin that is the drainage of the Congo River of west equatorial Africa. The basin begins in the highlands of the East African Rift system with input from the Chambeshi River, the Uele and Ubangi Rivers in the upper reaches and the Lualaba River draining wetlands...

, Tanzania
Tanzania
The United Republic of Tanzania is a country in East Africa bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north, Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west, and Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique to the south. The country's eastern borders lie on the Indian Ocean.Tanzania is a state...

 and Kenya
Kenya
Kenya , officially known as the Republic of Kenya, is a country in East Africa that lies on the equator, with the Indian Ocean to its south-east...

 (East Africa), the plant is called sukuma wiki.

Description

The cultivar group name Acephala ("without a head" in Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

) refers to the fact that this variety of B. oleracea does not have the usual close-knit core of leaves (a "head") like cabbage. The plant is a biennial
Biennial plant
A biennial plant is a flowering plant that takes two years to complete its biological lifecycle. In the first year the plant grows leaves, stems, and roots , then it enters a period of dormancy over the colder months. Usually the stem remains very short and the leaves are low to the ground, forming...

 where winter frost occurs, and perennial
Perennial plant
A perennial plant or simply perennial is a plant that lives for more than two years. The term is often used to differentiate a plant from shorter lived annuals and biennials. The term is sometimes misused by commercial gardeners or horticulturalists to describe only herbaceous perennials...

 in even colder regions. It is also moderately sensitive to salinity. It has an upright stalk, often growing up to two feet tall. The plant is very similar to kale
Kale
Kale is very high in beta carotene, vitamin K, vitamin C, lutein, zeaxanthin, and reasonably rich in calcium. Kale, as with broccoli and other brassicas, contains sulforaphane , a chemical with potent anti-cancer properties. Boiling decreases the level of sulforaphane; however, steaming,...

. Popular cultivars of collard greens include 'Georgia Southern', 'Morris Heading', 'Butter Collard' (or couve-manteiga), and couve tronchuda.

Cultivation and storage

The plant is commercially cultivated for its thick, slightly bitter, edible leaves. They are available year-round, but are tastier and more nutritious in the cold months, after the first frost. For best texture, the leaves should be picked before they reach their maximum size, at which stage the leaves will be thicker and should be cooked differently from the new leaves. Age will not affect flavor. Flavor and texture also depend on the cultivar
Cultivar
A cultivar'Cultivar has two meanings as explained under Formal definition. When used in reference to a taxon, the word does not apply to an individual plant but to all those plants sharing the unique characteristics that define the cultivar. is a plant or group of plants selected for desirable...

; the couve-manteiga and couve tronchuda are especially appreciated in Brazil
Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

 and Portugal
Portugal
Portugal , officially the Portuguese Republic is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East. The Atlantic archipelagos of the...

.

Fresh collard leaves can be stored for up to 10 days if refrigerated to just above freezing (1°C) at high humidity (>95%). In domestic refrigerators, fresh collard leaves can be stored for about three days. Once cooked, they can be frozen and stored for greater lengths of time.

Nutritional information

Widely considered to be a healthy food, collards are good sources of vitamin C and soluble fiber, and contain multiple nutrients with potent anticancer properties, such as diindolylmethane and sulforaphane
Sulforaphane
Sulforaphane is an organosulfur compound that exhibits anticancer, antidiabetic, and antimicrobial properties in experimental models. It is obtained from cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts or cabbages. The enzyme myrosinase transforms glucoraphanin, a glucosinolate, into...

. Roughly a quarter pound (approx. 100 g) of cooked collards contains 46 Calories.

Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley have recently discovered that 3,3'-diindolylmethane in Brassica vegetables such as collard greens is a potent modulator of the innate immune response system with potent antiviral, antibacterial and anticancer activity.

North America

Collard greens are a staple
Staple food
A staple food is one that is eaten regularly and in such quantities that it constitutes a dominant portion of a diet, and that supplies a high proportion of energy and nutrient needs. Most people live on a diet based on one or more staples...

 vegetable of southern U.S. cuisine
Cuisine of the Southern United States
The cuisine of the Southern United States is defined as the historical regional culinary form of states generally south of the Mason Dixon Line dividing Pennsylvania from Maryland and Delaware as well as along the Ohio River, and extending west to Southern Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas.The most...

. They are often prepared with other similar green leaf vegetables, such as kale, turnip
Turnip
The turnip or white turnip is a root vegetable commonly grown in temperate climates worldwide for its white, bulbous taproot. Small, tender varieties are grown for human consumption, while larger varieties are grown as feed for livestock...

 greens, spinach
Spinach
Spinach is an edible flowering plant in the family of Amaranthaceae. It is native to central and southwestern Asia. It is an annual plant , which grows to a height of up to 30 cm. Spinach may survive over winter in temperate regions...

, and mustard
Mustard plant
Mustards are several plant species in the genera Brassica and Sinapis whose small mustard seeds are used as a spice and, by grinding and mixing them with water, vinegar or other liquids, are turned into the condiment known as mustard or prepared mustard...

 greens in "mixed greens". They are generally eaten year-round in the South. Typical seasonings when cooking collards can consist of smoked
Smoked meat
Smoked meat is a method of preparing red meat which originates in prehistory. Its purpose is to preserve these protein-rich foods, which would otherwise spoil quickly, for long periods. There are two mechanisms for this preservation: dehydration and the antibacterial properties of absorbed smoke...

 and salted meats (ham hock
Ham hock
A ham hock or hough is the joint between the tibia/fibula and the metatarsals of the foot, where the foot was attached to the hog's leg...

s, smoked turkey drumsticks, pork neckbones, fatback
Fatback
Fatback is a cut of meat from a domestic pig. It consists of the layer of adipose tissue under the skin of the back, with or without the skin...

 or other fatty meat), diced onions, vinegar
Vinegar
Vinegar is a liquid substance consisting mainly of acetic acid and water, the acetic acid being produced through the fermentation of ethanol by acetic acid bacteria. Commercial vinegar is produced either by fast or slow fermentation processes. Slow methods generally are used with traditional...

, salt
Salt
In chemistry, salts are ionic compounds that result from the neutralization reaction of an acid and a base. They are composed of cations and anions so that the product is electrically neutral...

, and black
Black pepper
Black pepper is a flowering vine in the family Piperaceae, cultivated for its fruit, which is usually dried and used as a spice and seasoning. The fruit, known as a peppercorn when dried, is approximately in diameter, dark red when fully mature, and, like all drupes, contains a single seed...

, white, or crushed red pepper. Traditionally, collards are eaten on New Year's Day
New Year's Day
New Year's Day is observed on January 1, the first day of the year on the modern Gregorian calendar as well as the Julian calendar used in ancient Rome...

, along with black-eyed peas or field peas and cornbread
Cornbread
Cornbread is a generic name for any number of quick breads containing cornmeal and leavened by baking powder.-History:Native Americans were using ground corn for food thousands of years before European explorers arrived in the New World...

, to ensure wealth in the coming year, as the leaves resemble folding money. Cornbread is used to soak up the "pot liquor", a nutrient-rich collard broth. Collard greens may also be thinly sliced and fermented to make collard kraut, which is often cooked with flat dumplings.

Brazil and Portugal

In Portuguese
Portuguese cuisine
Portuguese cuisine is characterised by rich, filling and full-flavored dishes and is closely related to Mediterranean cuisine. The influence of Portugal's former colonial possessions is also notable, especially in the wide variety of spices used. These spices include piri piri and black pepper, as...

 and Brazilian cuisine
Cuisine of Brazil
Brazilian cuisine, like Brazil itself, varies greatly by region. The natural crops available in each region add to their singularity.Brazilian cooking, while it has many similarities with that of its South American neighbors, is distinct...

, collard greens (or couve) are common accompaniments of fish and meat dishes. They are a standard side dish for feijoada
Feijoada
Feijoada is a stew of beans with beef and pork, which is a typical from Brazilian Cuisine, is also typical in Angola, Mozambique, Goa, India and other former Portuguese colonies. In Brazil, feijoada is considered by many as the national dish...

, a popular pork and beans
Pork and beans
Pork and beans is a culinary dish that uses pork and beans as its main ingredients. Numerous variations exist from Fabada Asturiana to Olla podrida to American canned pork and beans.-American canned pork and beans:...

-style stew. The leaves are sliced into strips, 1/2 cm wide (sometimes by the grocer or market vendor, with a special hand-crank
Crank (mechanism)
A crank is an arm attached at right angles to a rotating shaft by which reciprocating motion is imparted to or received from the shaft. It is used to change circular into reciprocating motion, or reciprocating into circular motion. The arm may be a bent portion of the shaft, or a separate arm...

ed slicer) and sautéed with oil or butter, flavored with garlic
Garlic
Allium sativum, commonly known as garlic, is a species in the onion genus, Allium. Its close relatives include the onion, shallot, leek, chive, and rakkyo. Dating back over 6,000 years, garlic is native to central Asia, and has long been a staple in the Mediterranean region, as well as a frequent...

, onion
Onion
The onion , also known as the bulb onion, common onion and garden onion, is the most widely cultivated species of the genus Allium. The genus Allium also contains a number of other species variously referred to as onions and cultivated for food, such as the Japanese bunching onion The onion...

, and salt. Sometimes, it is also eaten fresh.

Thinly sliced collard greens are also the main ingredient of a popular soup
Soup
Soup is a generally warm food that is made by combining ingredients such as meat and vegetables with stock, juice, water, or another liquid. Hot soups are additionally characterized by boiling solid ingredients in liquids in a pot until the flavors are extracted, forming a broth.Traditionally,...

, caldo verde
Caldo verde
Caldo verde is a popular soup in Portuguese cuisine.The basic ingredients for caldo verde are potatoes, onions and kale . Common additional ingredients are garlic, salt, and olive oil. Some recipes add meat...

 (green broth).

The juice pressed from fresh leaves and leaf stalks, taken regularly, is popularly believed to be a remedy for gout
Gout
Gout is a medical condition usually characterized by recurrent attacks of acute inflammatory arthritis—a red, tender, hot, swollen joint. The metatarsal-phalangeal joint at the base of the big toe is the most commonly affected . However, it may also present as tophi, kidney stones, or urate...

, bronchitis
Bronchitis
Acute bronchitis is an inflammation of the large bronchi in the lungs that is usually caused by viruses or bacteria and may last several days or weeks. Characteristic symptoms include cough, sputum production, and shortness of breath and wheezing related to the obstruction of the inflamed airways...

, and blood circulation problems.

Kashmir Region (India and Pakistan)

In Kashmir
Kashmir
Kashmir is the northwestern region of the Indian subcontinent. Until the mid-19th century, the term Kashmir geographically denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range...

, this vegetable is a very renowned one. It finds its place in almost every meal in Kashmiri houses. Both leaves and roots are consumed. Leaves in the bud are harvested by pinching in early spring, when the dormant buds sprout and give out tender leaves. Also, seedlings of 35–40 days' age, as well as mature plants, are pulled out along with roots from thickly sown beds. When the extending stem bears alternate leaves in quick succession during on-season, older leaves are harvested periodically. Before the autumn season, the apical portion of stem is removed along with the whorled leaves.

The roots and the leaves may be cooked together or separately. A common dish is haak rus, a soup of whole collard leaves cooked in water, salt and oil, usually consumed with rice. The leaves are also cooked along with meat, fish or cheese In winter, collard leaves and roots are fermented to form a very popular pickle called haak-e-aanchaar.

Egypt

In Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

, collard greens, called sel (with the apostrophe denoting a glottal stop), are used solely in a garlicky soup with colocasia
Colocasia
Colocasia is a genus of 25 or more species of flowering plants in the family Araceae, native to tropical Polynesia and southeastern Asia. Common names include Elephant-ear, Taro, Cocoyam, Dasheen,Chembu, and Eddoe...

, or taro root.

South Carolina

In 2011, the South Carolina General Assembly voted on a bill sponsored by Sen. Jake Knotts (R), Lexington County, to make collard greens the State leafy green.

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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