Abu Dureti's collard greens

Contributed by Preston Maring, MD

Abu Dureti's collard greens

Abu Dureti is a 17-year-old high school student in north Portland, Oregon, who immigrated from Kenya five years ago. After school a few days a week, she works at a one-acre organic farm on Sauvie Island near the city. "Food Works" employs a number of the community's youth each year to grow vegetables for sale at farmers markets and to donate to needy people. Kaiser Permanente has sponsored this farm through its Community Benefit program.

The USDA recently recognized this enterprise and awarded them a sizeable grant to continue their important contribution to the youth who work there and to the people of Portland. Abu took me on a row by row tour of the farm. We ate some sweet corn right off the stalk. I asked her to tell me her very favorite recipe she cooks at home. I've tried it. It's the best. It was a privilege to see what they created together.

Servings: 4


  • Baby collard greens enought to fill a colander, tough stems removed or big big collard green leaves cut in large pieces (could use chard or kale or spinach)
  • 3 heirloom tomatoes or the equivalent of cherry and plum tomatoes, chunked
  • 1 large onion, big dice
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red chilis
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste


As Abu told me...

  1. Cook the onions in the oil until mushy (translucent). 
  2. Add the crushed chilies, if using (these are my only addition). 
  3. Add the tomatoes and cook until mushy. 
  4. Add the greens and about 1/4 cup water. They will totally fill up a big saute pan. 
  5. Cover the pan and cook until the greens are mushy (just tender, about 10-15 minutes). 
  6. Season with salt and pepper. The dish was colorful, easy, with a wonderfully robust flavor.

Nutrition Information (per serving)

  • Calories: 115
  • Fat: 7 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Trans Fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg
  • Carbohydrate: 12 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Sodium: 116 mg
  • Protein: 3 g