Friday, September 5, 2008

Collards and Turnips

The recent hurricanes that have plagued the South do have some benefit here in north Mississippi. My fall crop of turnips and collards are thriving on the grey wet days produced by the storms.

The eating of greens is I think is one of the standards of measure of a Southerner. If you are not only from the South, but of the South as well, you eat them. Who among us has not had a nice bowl of greens, sprinkled with a little pepper sauce, a buttered wedge of cornbread cooked in a cast iron skillet on the side?

I am happy to report even my children, all thee of them enjoy their greens. Like some bizarre cult from Vulcan we surely must appear to outsiders. Mustards, collards, and turnip greens, we love them all. They are easy to grow, insanely good for you, soothing, good basic Southern fare.

We prepare them very simply, cooked in salted water to which a little oil is added. We don't add ham hocks or any meat to ours. Ours have a very clean taste. You serve them with what we call some pot liquor, which is the liquid they are cooked in. Some folk like to sprinkle a few cut red oinions on top.

Children, eat your greens...

Barry R McCain

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