Did you know that you can eat collard greens raw in a salad, just like kale? I didn’t until fairly recently. They are delicious this way, and while I love some slow-cooked collard greens simmered with a ham hock and lots of vinegar, sometimes I’m craving a fresher preparation, especially in summer! You can also sub kale or kohlrabi greens in this recipe if you can’t find collards, or just want to try a variation. I made this salad to bring to a barbecue in Prospect Park this weekend, and I liked it so much, I decided to share it with you here on the blog.
By the way, grilling is my new favorite thing. We’ve had a little Weber grill for years, but it always seemed like too much of an effort to pack up everything and lug it all over to the park. It does take some effort, but it is totally worth it. I feel like I’m really cheating the system somehow by doing it—I get to live in the city AND grill just like people in the suburbs do! We invited a group of friends to meet us, and everyone brought things to throw on the grill for a feast of sausages, veggies, and various cuts of beef. My favorite part of the night was watching our Venezuelan and Cuban friends eat s’mores for the first time ever.
I would highly recommend bringing this salad to your next barbecue, or any potluck, since it travels pretty well (and tastes great). Leftovers, while they might not look super perky, are still delicious the next day. Add some avocado and leftover grilled chicken to make the salad into a heartier meal.
Collard Salad with Pickled Raisins, Pecans, & Feta
for the pickled raisins
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup cider vinagar
- pinch of salt
for the vinaigrette
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
for the salad
- 1 bunch collard greens, washed and dried well, stems removed and leaves sliced into very thin slivers
- 1 small bunch red radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 cup crumbled feta
- 1/2 cup toasted pecan pieces
- 1/3 cup chive blossoms, or substitute 3 Tbsp chopped chives
- Make the pickled raisins. Combine vinegar and raisins in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat, cover, and allow the vinegar to infuse for 20 minutes. Drain the raisins and set them aside to cool.
- Make the vinaigrette. In a small bowl, combine the mustard, lemon juice, and vinegar. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, then add the salt and a few grinds of pepper.
- Make the salad. Place the collard greens in a large serving bowl and add about 3/4 of the vinaigrette, tossing to combine. Add most of the radishes, feta, pecans, chive blossoms, and pickled raisins (reserving a small amount of each for garnish) and toss to combine, adding more vinaigrette if needed. Top with the reserved ingredients and serve. Note: This salad is even better if the dressing has some time to soak into the collard greens, so if you’re able to make this a few hours ahead of time, just reserve the garnishes until serving time, re-toss, and garnish the salad just before serving.