For our Brazilian Carnival dinner, I prepared the following recipe to share. Because Brazilian cuisine can often be very heavy on meats, I wanted to make sure we had some vegetables and greens on the table. This is a traditional vegetable side dish to enjoy with feijoada (a traditional black bean stew) during Carnivale.
Couve Mineira (Brazilian Garlicky Collard Greens)
recipe from DonaBrasil
- 1 pound of collard greens, kale or Savoy cabbage
- 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil or olive oil
- garlic to taste
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
Wash and drain the kale or the collard greens. Remove the hard stems of the kale. Roll the leaves tightly together and slice into very thin shreds. As the shreds have to be very thin, the knife has to be sharp.
Sauté the garlic, the salt and the pepper in the oil (some people add a small union at this step). Stir-fry the shredded leaves quickly at high heat. It is important that you stop in time: the leaves have to wilt slightly but should keep their bright color.
The Cultural Significance of Couve Mineira in Brazilian Cuisine
Couve Mineira holds a revered place in Brazil’s culinary tradition, embodying a rich history infused with African influences. Family recipes passed through generations symbolize the dish’s evolving nature where it remains a beloved feature at barbecues and family feasts, seamlessly fitting with classic Brazilian dishes like feijoada.
Outside its home country, Couve Mineira has also charmed an international audience, a testament to its ability to bridge cultures through the love of shared flavors and communal dining experiences, establishing itself as more than just food—it’s a celebration of heritage.
Preparing and Enjoying Couve Mineira
Traditional preparation involves a meticulous slicing technique, bringing out the best in taste and texture when sauteed with garlic. The dish’s flexibility is evident in contemporary renditions that accommodate a spectrum of diets and personal tastes, preserving its basic essence while keeping it exciting and new.
As a table-side favorite, Couve Mineira’s presence enhances the gustatory experience, mingling with rich, smoky dishes to evoke warm communal sentiments, turning meals into memorable and homely occasions.
The Nutritional Benefits of Couve Mineira
More than its culinary appeal, Couve Mineira offers substantial health benefits rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. It aligns with today’s lifestyle trends of balancing indulgence with wellness, incorporating a nutritious profile into one’s daily fare that’s as nourishing as it is delightful.
Health professionals often recommend such greens for their flexibility in meal planning, making Couve Mineira an exemplary addition to a nutritious diet whether served as a side or as a standalone dish with added proteins.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What makes Couve Mineira different from other collard greens dishes?
A: Couve Mineira is distinguished by its Brazilian culinary techniques, creating a unique flavor profile that embodies the country’s cultural essence.
Q: Can Couve Mineira be considered a vegan dish?
A: Its fundamental ingredients are indeed vegan. To maintain its vegan quality, careful selection of oil and garnishes is recommended.
Q: How can I incorporate Couve Mineira into a non-Brazilian meal plan?
A: Its versatile nature allows it to complement a variety of culinary styles, easily integrated into different meal plans, enhancing an array of international dishes.
1 pound collard greens, kale or Savoy cabbage
2 tablespoons sunflower oil or olive oil
Garlic to taste
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
Begin by thoroughly washing and draining your selected greens (collard greens, kale, or Savoy cabbage).
Carefully remove the tough stems from the greens, ensuring only the leaves remain for the recipe.
Take the cleaned leaves and roll them tightly into a bundle to prepare for slicing.
With a sharp knife, slice the bundled leaves into very thin shreds, aiming for even, fine pieces.
Heat the sunflower or olive oil in a large sauté pan or skillet over medium to high heat.
Crush or mince the garlic, depending on your taste preference, and add it to the hot oil, being cautious not to let it burn.
Season the oil and garlic mixture with salt and pepper to taste and, if desired, include a finely chopped small onion at this stage.
Quickly add the shredded greens to the pan, tossing them with the garlic oil to evenly coat each shred.
Stir-fry the greens, constantly moving them to avoid burning, until they are just beginning to wilt.
Be watchful of the greens’ color and texture; remove them from the heat as soon as they appear slightly wilted but still retain their bright green color.
The key to perfect Couve Mineira is the texture and color of the greens; they should be bright and slightly wilted but not overcooked.
Adjust garlic, salt, and pepper quantities to suit your taste.
Some variations of the recipe include a squeeze of lemon juice for an additional zesty flavor.
Serve immediately as a side dish for an authentic Brazilian experience.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Stir-Frying
- Cuisine: Brazilian
- Diet: Halal
- Serving Size: 1/4 pound serving
- Calories: 65 kcal
- Sugar: 0.5g
- Sodium: 200mg
- Fat: 7g
- Saturated Fat: 1g
- Unsaturated Fat: 6g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 4g
- Fiber: 2g
- Protein: 2g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
Keywords: Couve Mineira, Brazilian Cuisine, Collard Greens, Garlic, Carnival Side Dish, ,