Collard Greens, Corn and Tortilla Strata
Several years ago, collard greens and many other vegetables were not available in grocery stores. With the ‘world trade’, seasonal foods are available all year. Dandelion greens or spinach were only greens I was familiar with. Maybe turnip or beet greens were available on our farm table, but what kid was going to eat them if they could get out of it. My children were subjected to lettuces and spinach in salads.
So now I have learned to eat, cook and share Collard Greens, Corn and Tortilla Strata.
As you might have gathered, collard greens are good for you. They are a dark green vegetable with the ability to lower cholesterol and cancer protection. Collard greens are high in Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, calcium, fiber, and manganese to name a few. There is your multiple vitamin! Now corn adds B vitamins, folate and thiamin when eaten as a special summertime food, corn-on-the-cob, a midwest favorite side dish. Corn is considered a staple food, the basis for polenta, tortillas, burritos, corn meal, flour, starch and popcorn!¹
I adapted this recipe by adding roasted red bell peppers instead of mushrooms. I like the sweeter taste plus the red color. Red bell peppers provide Vitamin C, A, B6 and folate. Add garlic to the strata, it is credited to having healing potential of lowering cholesterol and cancer protection.¹ Use 1% milk to lower fat and calories, though I did add cheddar cheese on top.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 10 ounces of fresh collard greens, chopped, blanched and well-drained OR 10 ounces frozen chopped collard greens, thawed and squeezed dry.
- 3 cups 1% milk
- salt to taste
- ¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1½ cups fresh corn or frozen corn, thawed
- ¼ cup of diced roasted red bell peppers
- 2 tortillas (8-inch diameter), halved
- ¾ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Preheat oven to 375 F.
- Grease a 2½ quart or 9 x 13 casserole dish.
- In a large sauce pan, heat the olive oil, add the minced garlic, cook until soft.
- Add the blanched fresh or frozen collard greens, cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
- Combine the milk, salt, pepper sauce into the flour, stir until smooth.
- Add the milk mixture to the collard greens, stir until the sauce is creamy and thickened slightly, about 5 minutes.
- Add the corn and roasted red bell peppers, heat about 3 minutes
- Remove from heat, stir in ½ cup of shredded cheddar cheese until melted.
- Arrange a layer of tortillas on the bottom of the casserole, cover with half of collard/corn mixture.
- Add another layer of tortillas, cover with remainder of mixed vegetables.
- Sprinkle top of casserole with remainder of the shredded cheese.
- Bake for 25 minutes or casserole is hot and bubbling.
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