the replacement greens

Southern collard greens
Southern collard greens

The foods I ate in my home while growing up in Houston Were always from different cultures. While these dishes did exist in my home, my mom never failed to acknowledge that the dishes weren’t something she made up off the top of her head, and nor did she disregard the cultural significance each dish held. With all of the flavors I was exposed to at a young age, the food I loved the most was collard greens. They were there for every family gathering, every holiday, and sometimes my birthdays, but I hadn’t considered how this would change when I left home. As a child, I wondered where these greens came from. I first thought that they came from Africa due to their popularity among African Americans, but this confidence was snatched from me quickly. Collard Greens originated in the Eastern Mediterranean and made their way to be grown in Africa. What did come from Africa though, was the cooking method of collard greens. When African slaves were brought to America, collard greens were one of the few plants they could grow, creating the now strong association with African American culture. 
 The dining hall had Spinach every now and then, but there still wasn’t a desire to eat it. One day, steamed Bok Choy appeared on the menu and as a curious young adult, I wanted to see what that was. It looked like spinach which was disappointing, but I still had to try it. I waited in line at the dining hall with a side of rice, hoping that this could finally diminish my collard green demand. Then finally, the greens were on my plate.

– PR

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more