Sweet Shiitake Peanut Noodles with Collard Greens

November 20, 2015 14 Comments

Sweet Shiitake Peanut Noodles | From the Land we Live on

I planted a pretty generous patch of collard greens at the start of the growing season, with vivid plans of collard wraps, vibrant green smoothies, and of course, experiments. Many months, a few wraps, and one very unfortunate smoothie later, the gorgeous patch of collards, still stood, tall and proud, and almost untouched. At one point a big meaty spider made a home in one of the leaves and I was so happy to see at least one beautiful leaf being appreciated.

There isn’t anything inherently wrong with collards, I just feel like they’re hanging out somewhere in between kale and cabbage, yet kind of inferior to both. It feels wrong to say this but I wasn’t even inspired to experiment with them when there were so many other garden things competing for my attention. Oh and have you ever googled “collard greens”? The image search yields some of the worst looking food I’ve ever seen.

Collard Greens in the garden | From the Land we Live onAs we approach the inevitable hard frost, the pressure is on. Wasting super nutritious home-grown produce is not an option, even if it means putting collards in virtually all of my random solo lunch melanges. Good news is that some of these lunches, like these sweet shiitake and peanut noodles (with collard greens, of course), actually turned out pretty darn delicious. I might even consider growing another collard plant (just one) next year.

Sweet Shiitake Peanut Noodles | From the Land we Live onSweet Shiitake Peanut Noodles | From the Land we Live on

Sweet Shiitake Peanut Noodles with Collard Greens

Serving Size: 4 - 6

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup of tamari or soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup of maple syrup
  • 1 Tbsp. of unrefined + roasted peanut oil (see note) - I love this one
  • 1 Tbsp. of rice wine vinegar
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp. of coconut oil (or your favourite cooking oil - see note)
  • 1 lb of shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, sliced
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • a large knob of ginger, finely chopped
  • 1/2 lb of collard greens, stems removed, and thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup of finely chopped peanuts + more for garnish
  • 12oz of dry brown rice spaghetti noodles (see note) - I used a pack of these ones, cooked and drained.
  • A few scallions, finely chopped, for garnish.

Instructions

  1. Prep note: I suggest cooking the noodles as you're prepping the shiitake mix. It comes together pretty quickly and it's best to combine the hot shiitake mix with freshly cooked noodles right away, so estimate the timing appropriately depending on your pace and the cooking time for your type/brand of noodles.
  2. Measure out the soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, maple syrup, and peanut oil. Whisk gently to combine and set aside.
  3. Heat 1 Tbsp. of the coconut oil in a large skillet.
  4. Cook the shiitakes in batches, to maximize the amount of surface area that is touching the skillet, adding more oil in between if necessary. Start with about 3 - 4 minutes for each batch, toss, cook another minute or two, and switch it up. Once all the shiitakes have a some browning (flavaaaahhh!), remove them from the pan and set aside.
  5. Warm another few teaspoons of oil and sautee the garlic and ginger until fragrant (about a minute).
  6. Add the shiitakes back to the pot and stir fry for another few minutes.
  7. Add the soy sauce mix to the pot, toss with the shiitakes, and immediately turn heat to low and cover.
  8. Let the mushrooms simmer in the sauce for a minute or two to absorb some of the seasoning. You don't want them to absorb all of it, just enough to add flavour to the mushrooms and leave some behind for flavouring the noodles.
  9. Add in the collard greens, toss, and cover again for about 15 - 20 seconds just to wilt them.
  10. Finally combine everything with the pasta + 1/4 cup of the peanuts and toss.
  11. Taste a few noodles and season with more tamari, if necessary. Add more peanut oil if the noodles seem dry.
  12. Serve right away, topped with scallions and more peanuts.

Notes

I like the flavour of coconut oil in this dish, but if you're sensitive the coconut flavour taking over, you can substitute your favourite cooking oil. I did bacon fat once ;) So good!

The point of the peanut oil is to add flavour. Lightly roasted and unrefined peanut oil is NOT THE SAME as peanut cooking oil. It should have a nice peanut-y flavour. You can substitute sesame oil. I really love Le Tourangelle oils (both peanut and sesame)

Any kind of noodles should work. I've tried brown rice spaghetti and regular wheat spaghetti, but I assume that chow mein or soba noodles would work just as well.

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14 Comments

  1. Reply

    Ksenia @ At the Immigrant’s Table

    November 20, 2015

    I eat A LOT of collard green wraps, so I actually quite like the taste of these under-appreciated greens. You did a beautiful job with them – the pairing sounds just right! And I conquer about the images usually associated with collard greens… I blame Southern food.

    • Reply

      Sofia

      November 20, 2015

      Thanks, Ksenia! I used to eat a lot of wraps too, but I guess not so much anymore since I work from home and lunch is whatever. I loved them for take-to-work lunches!

  2. Reply

    janet @ the taste space

    November 20, 2015

    This looks awesome, Sofia… but have no fear, the frost will make the collards a bit more sweet. I still have a few collard leaves left in my garden and it is nice not to be stressed about eating them throughout the summer.

    • Reply

      Sofia

      November 20, 2015

      Yeah! I heard that kale, collards, and spinach improves with a light frost. I guess I shouldn’t feel so bad for leaving them for fall eating :) Thanks, Janet.

  3. Reply

    danielle is rooting the sun

    November 20, 2015

    sofia i just love your garden connection – your intentions hit so close to home, as every season there is a golden child that nurse and sing songs of big plans to – and then inevitably, just as your collard patch, i end up with a patch or an over-abundance too. this year was definitely the year of swiss chard! love collards, though, as well these pictures and your recipe. what a delicious application (scared to do the google search). happy weekend lovely lady! xo

    • Reply

      Sofia

      November 22, 2015

      Thanks so much, Danielle! I wasn’t able to get any swiss chard at all this year…the gardens seem to have minds of their own :)

  4. Reply

    Samantha

    November 20, 2015

    I laughed when I read your comment about googling collard greens; it’s totally the truth. There’s also not the best looking greens, reminding me a lot of lily pads and thus often making me away towards Swiss chard or kale. The greens sound and look delicious with the peanut sauce!

    • Reply

      Sofia

      November 22, 2015

      Thanks Samantha! I try not to judge food by the way it looks (I’m sure all those dishes that I googled were delicious), it’s just hard to get excited about cooking them. Glad that the noodles turned out ok looking..maybe it’ll improve the image search of google is nice to me :)

  5. Reply

    Jodi

    November 21, 2015

    I love this Sofia! You’re right about collards, they are never my first pick at the market but its great to step out of the routine a bit, I guess collards are the greens that challenge you. They are, however, the most photogenic leaves! I love this recipe so much, I ‘ve been on a bit of a peanut kick as of late, something about that rich flavor just suits me this time of year. Hope you’re garden is doing well, must be loving this warm fall we’re having this year! All the best for your weekend ahead x

    • Reply

      Sofia

      November 22, 2015

      Thanks so much Jodi! I also love peanuts during this time of the year…another peanut recipe coming soon, though I think the garden is living it’s final few days of the season (-6 tonight) so I’ll have to find a new source of inspiration.

  6. Reply

    Kathryn @ The Scratch Artist

    December 7, 2015

    Hehe! I understand that experience well. I plant and grocery shop with an empty stomach and then when it comes time to eat everything I let out a guilty yelp. So true what you said about collard greens being similar yet inferior to both kale and cabbage. That being said, this dish looks gorgeous and delicious. I can taste all of the flavors together, YUM!

    • Reply

      Sofia

      December 8, 2015

      Thanks so much, Kathryn! Yeah, an empty stomach grocery trip is dangerous for sure haha. In this case I just had no idea how big these collards would get, but now I know that one plant will be more than enough to feed our little family.

  7. Reply

    kathy patalsky

    February 10, 2016

    so beautiful! love this meal

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