Steamed Collard Green Wraps

Catching up on some recipe-posting while enjoying Baseball Opening Day.

Steamed Collard Greens

Steamed Collard Wraps

made on March 11, 2014
adapted from Steamed Collard Wraps in The Ayurvedic Vegan Kitchen by Talya Lutzker

My local coop has had the most fabulous greens this winter (chard, kale, collards).  Recently I bought two bunches of collards and then needed to use them.  Here’s what I did with most of them.


1-2 bunches of collard greens (as many leaves as you want wraps); I made 10 wraps

Protein (choose one or more)

  • 8 oz. hummus (homemade or store bought)
  • one 2-oz bundle of bean thread vermicelli, soaked in warm water for 30 minutes, then drained
  • shredded chicken


  • 1 cucumber, julienned or sliced thin with a mandolin
  • 1/2 red onion, julienned
  • 2-3 carrots, grated (use some for dipping sauce below)*
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 3-4 scallions, thinly sliced*
  • 2/3 cup chopped cilantro*

for Dipping Sauce

  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. water
  • 1/2 c. rice vinegar
  • 1-2 Tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2-3 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 2-4 Tablespoons chopped peanuts
  • 2-4 Tablespoons grated carrots*
  • 1-2 Tablespoons chopped cilantro*
  • 1-2 Tablespoons chopped scallions*


  1. Remove the stems from the collard greens by slicing along each side of the stems so that each leaf is cut in half lengthwise and each half remains intact.
  2. In a large pot with a steamer basket and 1″ of water in the bottom, steam the collard greens for 60-90 seconds each or until just  softened and pliable enough to work with.  Transfer collard greens to a separate bowl or colander.
  3. Create an assembly line with the remaining ingredients, having all in easy reach.
  4. Place 2 collard leaf halves lengthwise on top of each other overlapping a couple of inches along the center.
  5. Place 1-2 heaping tablespoons of your chosen protein at one end.  Top with a few of each of the vegetables.
  6. Carefully fold the end of the collard leaves over the filling and roll like a burrito, folding in the sides as you go.
  7. Secure the wrap with a toothpick to keep it from unrolling.

Make Dipping Sauce*

In a small saucepan combine sugar and water; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.  Remove from heat.  Stir in rice wine vinegar, fish sauce, and red chili peppers.  Pour sauce into serving bowl.  Chill, then top with peanuts, carrots, cilantro, and scallions.

Serve collard wraps with the dipping sauce or a creamy cucumber dressing.



  • You might want to put some sort of sauce inside the wraps, rather than dipping (or to make the wraps more “portable”.  Just remember that there’s nothing in these wraps to absorb excess moisture.
  • I was hoping for larger wraps, but these are more appetizer size . . . but if you eat 2-3 of them, they can be a meal 🙂

©2014, Lucinda DeWitt

*The dipping sauce recipe was adapted from the Spring Roll Sauce recipe in Keo’s Thai Cusine cookbook by Keo Sananikone


Lemon-Soy-Sesame Marinade

Lemon-Soy-Sesame Chicken & Kale

My plan for Marinated Grilled Vegetables was cancelled due to inclement weather (rain and hail throughout the day), forcing me to punt.  I had some leftover quinoa and baked sweet potato that needed to be eaten, a bunch of kale, and some chicken tenders.  So the marinade intended for grilled veggies became the basis for sautéed kale and marinated chicken tenders.

For years I’ve used this Lemon-Soy Marinade with vegetables (mushrooms, squash, peppers, red onion, eggplant slices . . . ), as well as tofu and tempeh; I found it originally in Quick Vegetarian Pleasures by Jeanne Lemlin (her version adds scallions and uses rather odd amounts of some of the ingredients, but my proportions are similar to hers).  Only tonight did it occur to me to use it on chicken!  Absolutely perfect combination of the tang of lemon, the salty tenderizing of tamari, and the nuttiness of sesame.

Lemon-Soy-Sesame Marinade

Makes about 1-1/4 cups, enough for several dishes, so divide in half if only using for one dish.

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup wheat-free tamari soy sauce
  • 3 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons grated ginger (or 1/2 tsp dry ground ginger)

Combine all ingredients in a bowl or jar and whisk or shake together.

Lemon-Soy-Sesame Chicken

Cut chicken tenders into bite-sized pieces.  Place in bowl and drizzle some of the marinade over— just enough to marinate all the pieces.  Stir to coat.  Let sit for at least 30 minutes (refrigerate if marinating longer than 30 minutes).  Heat skillet over high heat.  Toss in the chicken and its marinade.  Stir to cook until done, about 5-8 minutes.


Lemon-Soy-Sesame Kale

Remove one bunch kale from its stems (save the stems for veggie stock).  (Tearing with your hands is the easiest, but you can also run a knife down each side of the stem.  Wash the leaves and tear into bite-sized pieces.  Drain.  Heat a skillet over high heat.  Coat lightly with vegetable oil.  Add kale (you may have to do this in bunches, it will wilt down quickly).  Cover and cook until softened.  Sprinkle on about 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes (the kind folks use on pizza).  When the kale is almost done (from 10-20 minutes depending on how you like it) drizzle over a couple tablespoons of the Lemon-Soy-Sesame marinade.  Keep cooking until kale is done and most of the marinade has been absorbed or evaporated.


Update June 15, 2012

Today I doctored the remaining marinade and used it with some vegetables.  To what was left after making the above, I added 2 Tablespoons tamari, 2 Tablespoons oil, 2 Tablespoons rice wine, a dash of sesame oil, 1 Tablespoon molasses (honey would work too), and another clove of garlic.  After marinating a few hours my veggies looked like this before going into the 375°F oven (I gave up on the grilling):

After 40 minutes in the oven: