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Do collard greens exist in Ireland?

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,994 ✭✭✭c.p.w.g.w


    I'd like to make some cabbagey collard greens, but the cabbages in the shops only have a few green leaves on the outside, and the majority is white. Are there any pure green leafy types of cabbage?

    I'm trying to make this recipe. I've set a timestamp where you can see the cabbage used: https://youtu.be/rbzKwHGaNrY?t=177

    I think it would be ghastly with 90% white cabbage. I could just get a regular cabbage, use the two green leaves on the outside and just not use the rest.

    I know kale exists, but that's not what he has in the video and it's not the leafy sort of green I'm looking for.

    Collard Greens and Beet Greens are next to impossible to get in Ireland


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,494 ✭✭✭JackieChang


    Feck.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,994 ✭✭✭c.p.w.g.w


    Feck.

    Maybe a York cabbage might be the closest you're goning to get


  • Registered Users Posts: 28,313 ✭✭✭✭looksee


    You can sometimes get spring greens but you would be looking at a farmers market or similar I think to find them. They are young cabbage that have not hearted yet. As the name suggests it might be a month or two before they are available. Another possibility might be sweetheart cabbage - the very pointed small cabbage which is available. While they do have a bit of heart, if you buy a 'loose' one - one that does not feel very hard - you should get a good proportion of dark green leaves. Again a farmers market might be the best bet, you might be able to order some.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,181 ✭✭✭Lady Haywire


    Could chard work as a substitute?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,444 ✭✭✭✭Alun


    Cavolo Nero would be the closest thing you would get here, but it's not that common.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,444 ✭✭✭✭Alun


    When I lived in the UK as a child we used to often eat something we called spring cabbage which sounds pretty close as well. I've never seen it here though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,907 ✭✭✭✭the beer revolu


    Alun wrote: »
    Cavolo Nero would be the closest thing you would get here, but it's not that common.

    Was going to say this.
    It is sometimes available in Tesco.


  • Registered Users Posts: 28,313 ✭✭✭✭looksee


    Alun wrote: »
    When I lived in the UK as a child we used to often eat something we called spring cabbage which sounds pretty close as well. I've never seen it here though.

    Likewise in the UK, I remember spring cabbage, but I think that is what is called spring greens now. It was cabbage with quite big, flattish, dark green open leaves, which would describe spring greens.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,453 ✭✭✭Shenshen


    I've used kale as a substitute in some recipes calling for collard greens before. As I've never had collard greens, I can't say if it was a decent substitute, but it went well with the recipes I cooked.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7


    When I grew all my own vegetables? This was turnip greens. There is nothing to equal them. You could mix them with young cabbage leaves. My neighbours grew whole fields of turnips ( the big ones some call swedes) so this was a regular food

    Nearest I can get now is the greens of broccoli plants. The ones that grow nonstop all year.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,691 ✭✭✭✭The Nal


    Just use swiss chard, kale and/or pak choi instead.

    The proper seaweed type collard greens taste pretty manky.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7


    The Nal wrote: »
    Just use swiss chard, kale and/or pak choi instead.

    The proper seaweed type collard greens taste pretty manky.

    Earthy and flavoursome! I find cabbage anaemic and tasteless


  • Registered Users Posts: 16,907 ✭✭✭✭the beer revolu


    The Nal wrote: »
    Just use swiss chard, kale and/or pak choi instead.

    The proper seaweed type collard greens taste pretty manky.

    Of those three, kale would be closest.
    Swiss chard has a very distinctive earthy taste - a bit like beetroot.
    Pak Choi has a much softer structure and cooks very, very quickly.

    OP, if you can't get nero cavola , I'd use kale.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,444 ✭✭✭✭Alun


    I'd also say that in the case of chard or pak choi there's a higher ratio of stalk to leaf than with kale or cavolo nero which might not be what you're looking for.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,494 ✭✭✭JackieChang


    Regarding the kale recommendations, see my first post:
    I know kale exists, but that's not what he has in the video and it's not the leafy sort of green I'm looking for.

    It's all wrinkly and shriveled, almost hairy looking, and difficult to chop up and difficult to clean. It's my extreme last resort. I'd prefer to use the two or three outer leaves of normal cabbage instead.

    The cavalo nero looks nice. Nice and leafy. I've ever seen it anywhere. Looks like I can order it online though.

    Pak Choi has almost no flavour, not really what I'm looking for.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,691 ✭✭✭✭The Nal


    Regarding the kale recommendations, see my first post:



    It's all wrinkly and shriveled, almost hairy looking, and difficult to chop up and difficult to clean. It's my extreme last resort. I'd prefer to use the two or three outer leaves of normal cabbage instead.

    The cavalo nero looks nice. Nice and leafy. I've ever seen it anywhere. Looks like I can order it online though.

    Pak Choi has almost no flavour, not really what I'm looking for.

    Pak Choi takes flavour very well though.

    Cavalo nero is kale btw. Its lacinato kale, Tuscan kale, black kale.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,634 ✭✭✭✭Graces7


    The Nal wrote: »
    Pak Choi takes flavour very well though.

    Cavalo nero is kale btw. Its lacinato kale, Tuscan kale, black kale.

    Just eaten Russian kale straight from the garden. Not stringy or hairy but I crop it young so it renews.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14 Jimmy100


    Sorry to revive an old post, but need to respond. Collards are a cabbage-like, thick-leafed green grown for an autumn/winter harvest and best cut after the first frost. That helps mellow the flavor and soften the leaves. It takes a large patch to grow, usually doesn't need pesticide and yields multiple harvests.

    In the American South, it's usually cooked with ham bones and/or "fatback". If you don't have a pressure cooker it can take awhile to cook. Some regions add thick cornmeal or flour dumplings towards the end of cooking to soak up the "pot liquor" or juices. Served as a side, a splash of vinegar is often added to it.

    The closest thing texture and taste-wise to it readily found in Ireland is kale.



  • Registered Users Posts: 284 ✭✭mattcullen


    I've got collared greens here before I think https://www.mcnallyfamilyfarm.ie/. Their veg is great quality



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  • Registered Users Posts: 22,769 ✭✭✭✭The Hill Billy


    I was watching Countdown this afternoon and the word 'collard' was mentioned. Apparently, it used to mean cruel or heartless. Hence 'collard greens' - heartless cabbage.


    Every day is a school day, huh?



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