This is not your typical southern greens recipe, nor is it served in your typical style. A recipe this unique deserves its own serving portion. Even someone who doesn’t like slightly bitter greens will be pleasantly surprised by this tropical twist on a southern classic. Where did I find such a recipe? From MasterChef’s Season One Winner.
Imagine if you could take a Southern Great Grandma’s culinary mantle, add a healthy dose of mother’s wisdom, and fold in the culinary curiosity of a young girl, then put them all in a kitchen, you’d find yourself with Whitney Miller. She is a marvel at creating traditional favorites with a contemporary spin.
I recently met Whitney at a Melissa’s Produce cookbook launch for local food bloggers and journalists. We were so excited to hear Whitney talk about recipes from her latest book New Southern Table. The event was excellent, and both food and recipes expanded my current knowledge of Southern Food.
So much wisdom and passion came from this talented lady when she talked about family, food and hospitality.
We were treated to a few of Whitney’s dishes full of fresh ingredients.
Creole Succatash Salad (pg. 98) Chopped Green Beans & Mushroom Saute (p.148) Mississippi Banh Mi (pg.111) with Seared Beef Tips (pg. 174) & Sriracha Spread (pg. 289)
Baked Apple Hand Pies (pg. 238) Brownie Cookies (pg. 270)
At home I made a version of the Coconut Creamed Greens using swiss chard and the Spiced Roasted Okra (pg. 141)
This recipe is for an 8″ casserole dish. I chose to make individual 2-ounce servings to lure in the toughest green-haters with this manageable portion. Success.
- 2 teaspoons coconut or olive oil
- 12 cups packed chopped turnip greens or kale, ribs removed
- 2 (14-ounce) cans coconut milk (I used regular, not light)
- 6 cloves roasted garlic (see recipe below)
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- Honey, optional
- ½ cup unsweetened shaved coconut, roughly chopped
- 1 head garlic
- 1/ 4 teaspoon olive oil
- Place the oil in a large saute pan and heat over medium heat. Add the greens and cook, stirring and tossing occasionally, until slightly wilted, 8 to 10 minutes. Add the coconut milk and Roasted Garlic. Stir until well mixed. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the salt, and cook, uncovered, for an additional 30 minutes, stir ring occasionally.
- Transfer-the greens to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the greens are
- broken down into chunky small pieces, about 30 seconds. Do not puree. Stir in the honey to cut any remaining bitterness from the greens. Pour into a shallow 8-inch casserole dish. Season the creamed greens with additional salt to taste. Sprinkle the coconut in an even layer over the greens.
- Preheat the broiler. Broil the greens until the coconut is golden brown. Serve warm.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Remove the outer layers of the skin from the head of garlic and cut off about l/4 inch from the top, exposing the cloves. Place the garlic on a piece of aluminum foil. Drizzle the olive oil over the exposed cloves. Bring the edges of the aluminum foil together and crimp to close. Bake the garlic for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until fragrant and softened.
To serve this as an individual serving fill up six 2-ounce dessert glasses with the greens. Toast the coconut separately and place them on top right before serving.
You can purchase her cookbook New Southern Table – My Favorite Family Recipes with a Modern Twist on Amazon.
I am excited to add some wonderful southern recipes to my repertoire.
…and then, she paused for thought.