Collard Greens with Benne Seeds

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This recipe was originally published as part of a menu in Tasting Table National

TT Test Kitchen Tip: Benne seeds (also known as sesame seeds) add crunch and flavor, while a bit of honey tempers the slightly bitter collard greens. An extra dose of sesame oil ensures the seeds' subtle flavor doesn't get lost. Add a few chile flakes or a drizzle of chile oil if you like your greens spicy.

TT Test Kitchen Tip: These collard greens can be made early in the day and left at room temperature.

Collard Greens with Benne Seeds

Yield: 6 servings

Cook Time: 10 minutes


2 bunches collard greens, rinsed and patted dry

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 medium shallot, finely chopped

¼ cup sesame seeds

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1 teaspoon sesame oil


1. Remove the leaves from the stems of the greens. Cut the leaves into 1-inch pieces. Discard the stems or reserve for another use. Prepare an ice bath and set aside.

2. In a large saucepan set over high heat, bring 4 cups of salted water to a boil. Add the greens and return the water to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the greens are tender, about 5 minutes.

3. Drain and place the greens in the ice bath to stop the cooking. Remove from the ice bath and wrap in a large kitchen towel. Squeeze out as much excess water from the greens as possible. Set aside.

4. In a large skillet set over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the garlic, shallot, sesame seeds and rosemary and cook, stirring, until the sesame seeds begin to lightly brown, about 4 minutes. Stir in the reserved greens, honey and cider vinegar. Toss until the greens are well coated and heated through, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with the sesame oil and serve immediately or at room temperature.

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