On the Menu:
Smoked Sausage and Collard Greens with Cornbread
Last Tuesday, Fernay McPherson enlightened our Larkin Street Youth class with a satisfying soul food recipe that had us tasting savory and sweet flavors. Smoked chicken sausage and collard greens with the sweet, soft cornbread we made.
Chef Fernay, a San Francisco native, learned this corn bread recipe from her grandmother when she was growing up in the Fillmore. The class worked in groups and some worked on the sausage, onions, and garlic, others worked on the greens, and cornbread. QUICK TIP: Wash the collard greens after cutting them, that way you can fit more in your colander.
We got to cooking.
Once the onions, garlic, and sausage was cut, the sausage was added to a large pot. Chef then let the sausage brown for a bit and added in the garlic and onions. At this point the kitchen was filled with smokey aromas. After about 10-15 minutes, the cut collard greens were added along with a carton of chicken broth, salt, pepper, and cajun seasoning. Bring to the boil, and cover and apply low heat. Meanwhile students took precise measurements for the corn bread and whisked the batter to create airy, fluffy cornbread muffins. Quick Tip: Spray a cupcake pan with some oil or get a paper towel and rub the sets so that the cornbread does not stick to the baking tray. Pour in about 3/4 of the way since the bread will rise. The cornbread will take about 20-25 minutes to bake completely.
After about 20 minutes the lid from the pot was removed and everyone’s head turned towards the giant pot. Scents escaping the pot and oven caused great anticipation and excitement as the time to eat came closer and closer. A low temperature and long cooking time will make the dish even tastier. In due time, with patience, the flavors will be maximized. As the timer went off for the corn bread, the tops were just inching out of the tray with golden perfection. Bowls were filled with hearty amounts of sausage, onions, and greens. The flavors of the stew coupled with the cornbread was impeccable. The broth, also know as pot-liquor (Fernay’s favorite part), left warm smiles on everyone’s faces.
Sausage, Collard Greens, and Cornbread Recipe
1 large sausage
1 box of chicken stock
Roughly 1-2 lbs. collard greens
Cajun Spice mix (you can buy this or make it with paprika, cayenne, salt and pepper – garlic, onion, oregano and thyme can add a lot of good flavor to it too!)
What to do:
Cut onions and garlic in nice long slices.
Cut sausage into bite size segments.
Slice your collared greens and then clean thoroughly. (Clean after your cut the collard greens).
Pour some oil into a pot and let it get hot, once the pot is hot enough add your sausage and brown them. After they are browned add in your sliced onions and garlic. Stir around occasionally.
Add in your collard greens and your chicken stock. Bring to a boil, cover with a lid, and reduce the heat to about medium-low.
Preheat oven to about 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and prepare your batter.
Add cornbread mix, eggs, milk, and melted butter into a large bowl and whisk until the batter is a bit thickened, then either pour the batter in a large baking pan or a cupcake tray to make corn cake cupcakes. Remember to rub the bottom of the baking pans with some oil to reduce the risk of sticking while baking.
Place the cornbread into the oven and let them bake for roughly 20-25 minutes (it’ll say on the box).
Ladle yourself a couple hefty spoons of sausage, collared greens, and onions, along with a piece of corn bread and enjoy! Hot sauce: optional and a good idea!