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Garlic, Grits and Greens Squares


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American Morning

Ingredients:

  • 3 tb Unseasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 1 lb Collard greens; trimmed and chopped, or 1package (11 oz) chopped frozen collard greens
  • 3 tb Unsalted butter
  • 4 oz Smoked ham; cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 4 Cloves garlic; minced
  • 3 c Milk
  • 1/2 ts Salt
  • 1/2 ts Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 ts Cayenne
  • 1 c Uncooked quick grits
  • 1/2 c Grated Parmesan cheese
  • 4 Eggs

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Generously butter a shallow 2-quart baking pan and sprinkle the bottom and sides with the bread crumbs. Boil or steam the fresh collards until tender, about 5 minutes. Or thaw and squeeze excess moisture from the frozen collards. Set aside.
 
2. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the butter and cook the ham over medium-high heat, stirring often until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and collards and cook, stirring often, 2 minutes more. Set aside.
 
3. In a heavy 3-quart saucepan, bring the milk, salt, pepper and cayenne to a boil. Stir in the grits, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring almost constantly until the grits are very thick, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons butter, cheese and cooked ham and vegetables. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, then whisk in about 1 cup of the grits to warm the eggs. Blend the egg mixture back into the grits in the saucepan.
 
4. Spoon the grits into the prepared baking pan. Set the pan in a larger pan half-filled with hot water. Bake until firm, puffed and golden, 45 to 55 minutes. Remove the baking pan from the water bath and let stand for at least 10 minutes before cutting into squares to serve.
 
Leftovers The squares become quite firm as they cool and are good served with chopped fresh tomatoes dressed with vinegar and oil.
 
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NOTES : For truly vegetarian squares, you could leave out the ham, but then you might add about 1/3 cup more grated Parmesan cheese for extra flavor.
 
Recipe by: “Everybody Loves Meatloaf” by Melanie Barnard
 
Posted to MC-Recipe Digest by "abprice@wf.net" <abprice@wf.net> on Feb 26, 1998