Upon inspection of my pantry and refrigerator a few days ago, I came to realize two things. One, I have a TON of greens right now and two, I have polenta?? Must have bought that a while ago and forgotten about it! Hooray for finding surprise pantry staples!
Seeing these two things in abundance within my reach inspired me to make a southern style braised greens with kale and rainbow chard, cooked in a fashion that you would cook a good collard green with lots of hot sauce, vinegar and butter and to make a cheesy, tangy polenta (aka grits) to go underneath them. And of course, because it’s me, I had to put an egg on it. Yolk is the ultimate sauce.
You’ll be hard pressed to find a more satisfying breakfast or dinner!
Southen Style Braised Kale and Chard over Buttermilk Chevre Polenta with a Poached Egg
For the greens:
- 1 bunch Plowbreak Farm rainbow chard, thinly sliced
- 1 bunch Plowbreak Farm kale (either curly or dino), thinly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed and minced
- 1 shallot, peeled and sliced
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
- hot sauce (your favorite brand and as much/little as you like)
- salt and pepper to taste
For the Polenta:
- 1/2 cup polenta
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons Lemon Thyme Chevre from Lively Run
- 1 tablespoon butter
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 egg
- splash of vinegar
In a cast iron skillet over medium heat, melt one tablespoon of the butter. When hot and foamy, add the garlic and shallot and saute until softened and translucent, 1-2 minutes. Add the greens to the pan and stir to wilt. When almost completely wilted, add the vinegar and chicken stock to the pan and lower the heat to a simmer. Braise on the stovetop, stirring occasionally, until the greens have shrunk and darkened and almost all of the chicken stock has evaporated, about 30-40 minutes. Season with salt, the remaining tablespoon of butter and as much hot sauce as you like.
For the polenta, add the buttermilk and water to a pot over medium heat. When just boiling, slowly whisk in the polenta, drizzled into the liquid in an even stream. Lower the heat to a bare simmer. When thickened, put a lid on the pot and whisk vigorously every 5-10 minutes. After fifteen minutes, taste the polenta. If you like this doneness, then stir in the butter and chevre and season with salt. If you like your polenta a little thicker, sweeter and cornier, then continue cooking for ten to fifteen minutes longer.
To poach your egg, bring a pot of water to simmer on the stove. Add the vinegar and stir the water in the pot clockwise to form a nice vortex. Crack the egg into the center of the vortex and poach 3-4 minutes, until the white is cooked but the yolk is still runny. Remove the egg to a paper towel with a slotted spoon and season with salt.
To assemble, pour the polenta into a bowl, top with the greens and the egg and finish with a little more hot sauce! Enjoy!