Imagine sneaking into the depths of a dragon’s lair and snatching his precious treasure from right under his nose as he snoozed. Once outside, your heart would pump fast with exhilaration as you examined your bounty in the light. What was that dragon hoarding in his infernal cave? Gold? Jewels? You open your sack to reveal…collard greens?
Okay, so maybe leafy greens aren’t what you’d call a fortune. But they sure are a nutritional bounty, packed with fiber, folates and phytonutrients, low in calories, and free of fat. If I lived in the time of knights and dragons, when fresh veggies were often hard to come by, I’d probably pay a pretty penny for some raw collard greens. Not enough to buy you a castle, but maybe a small fortress. (This was before inflation cropped up.)
The reason I bring up this whole stealing business is because…well…I have a bit of a confession to make. It just so happens that I was making a breakfast casserole, and wanted to throw in some greens, but I didn’t have any of my own. So I stole some from the family dragon, Hades.
Baby bearded dragons have very particular dietary requirements, which are only satisfied very specific and somewhat pricey food items. For example, they need a lot of calcium, which can be found in collard greens. So my mom has been buying bags of the dark green leaves, and storing them away in a drawer in the fridge reserved for beardie food. I never intended to steal any of Hades’ food – honestly, I never thought I’d even want to dine on the same thing as a lizard. But I was getting sick of using the same ingredients over and over for recipes, and wanted to try something new to make for a more interesting blog post. And those leaves looked so green and healthy…and they matched the colors of the dark red tomatoes so nicely…so I swiped some. Just a tiny bit. I doubt if the dragon will even notice – he never eats his veggies anyway. My mom will just have to buy a new bag of greens a half a cup earlier, and she won’t notice either. So don’t tell anyone. Let’s just keep this our little secret. Okay? Okay.
A little stealing was worth it for a lot of flavor in this recipe. This breakfast casserole is based on Italian flavors, with a flatbread “crust” that gets crispy edges in the oven, delicious sun dried tomatoes, flavorful artichoke hearts, peppered Tofurkey, and of course the nutritious collard greens. With the eggs, milk, and organic cheese, this recipe is high in protein. It is a healthy and tasty choice for any meal of the day: Breakfast, lunch, dinner, or somewhere in between. For a large family, consider doubling the recipe as this only made about four servings. Bon appetit!
And please do not feed this to your bearded dragon. 🙂
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Source: Collard Greens Nutrition info from nutrition-and-you.com