Collard Green Olive Pesto
Adapted from Gourmet, March 2004, by Danny Toma of Naples, Italy
I love making many things into pesto- the classic basil, garlic scapes, chives, arugula- so I can’t wait to try this as a new preparation for collards!
1 bunch collard greens
4 large brine-cured green olives, pitted
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Pinch of salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 oz finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cut stems and center ribs from collard greens and discard. Stir collards into water in batches, then simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer collards with tongs to a colander to drain, very gently pressing the greens (don’t squeeze!) to drain excess water. (If making pasta, reserve water in pot for cooking pasta.) Coarsely chop collards.
Blend olives and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Add collards, water, vinegar, salt, cayenne, and pepper and pulse until finely chopped. With motor running, add oil in a slow stream. Turn off motor, then add cheese and pulse to combine.