There’s something poetic about sitting on your screened in porch under a ceiling fan shelling peas, shucking corn, or chopping collards when you live in the South. The summer heat seems to slow the pace of everything and I can appreciate that in a world full of rushing from one task to the next. Give me a radio and a basket of food and I’ll be on the porch all day.
When Time Inc. Books and NetGalley provided me with an advanced review copy of Todd Richards’s cookbook Soul, I was immediately pulled in by his passion for food and the celebration of his culture and its roots in creating the original Southern cuisine: Soul food. (If you’d like to read my full book review, please visit Roots & Reads.)
The chapters are divided by ingredients including collards, tomatoes, seafood, stone fruits, and melon. The recipes included evolve from American South traditional to a cultural fusion of ingredients to create unique dishes.
The most notable recipes in Soul for me are: Ginger and Collard Green Fried Rice, Hot & Spicy Zucchini Slaw, and Fried Green Tomatillos.
I wanted to share here with y’all my favorite recipe that I’ve prepared and taste tested so far!
Ginger and Collard Green Fried Rice
from Soul: A Culinary Evolution in 150 Recipes by Todd Richards
- 1 bunch young collard greens (1/2 lb)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 extra large chicken egg or 1 duck egg
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed and very thinly sliced
- 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated (about 2 teaspoons)
- 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon mirin
- 2 cups cooked white rice
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 1 jalapeño, very thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- red pepper flakes (optional)
- Clean your collards well in cold water. Stack 4 leaves on top of each other and remove stems with a sharp knife, then shred the stems and leaves. Rinse again in cold water and drain well.
- Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a medium pan or skillet over medium heat. Break egg into pan and cook 4 minutes, gently shaking occasionally to entire egg doesn’t stick. Sprinkle with salt and pepper before turning the egg over and cooking 2 more minutes. Transfer to a plate and keep warm.
- Heat remaining 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in pan over medium heat. Add shallot, garlic, and ginger stirring occasionally until shallot is clear. Stir in rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, and mirin. Stir in the cooked rice and cover, simmering until rice is heated through. Uncover and drizzle with sesame oil. Remove from heat and let stand for 2 minutes.
- Transfer fried rice to a serving bowl. Cut fried egg into strips. Top rice with egg strips then garnish with scallions, jalapeño, sesame seeds, and (optional) red pepper flakes.
Richards suggests serving this dish with: grilled seafood, grilled meats, poultry; spicy or citrus dishes.
My note: I used 2 teaspoons minced garlic because I didn’t have fresh garlic cloves. I used a 1/2 teaspoon of refrigerated ground ginger since I didn’t have fresh ginger. I also didn’t have a shallot so I used a quarter of a small Vidalia onion thinly diced.
Many thanks to Time Inc. Books and NetGalley for a digital ARC to review. Soul: A Culinary Evolution in 150 Recipes by Todd Richards is available in stores now!