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Jamaican-Spiced Beef Collard Wraps

Jamaican-Spiced Beef Collard Wraps

Photo by Tom McCorkle for The Washington Post

These burrito-style collard green wraps are brimming with brown rice, plus a saucy simmer of ground beef seasoned with the bold, fragrant flavors of a Jamaican beef patty. Using lean beef keeps the meal healthfully balanced, but you could substitute ground chicken or turkey, if you prefer.

Storage Notes: Unfilled, blanched collard greens may be prepared up to 3 days ahead and kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Allow to come to room temperature or warm slightly in the microwave before assembling.


8 medium collard greens leaves, washed (about 10 ounces)
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean or higher)
1 medium yellow onion, finely diced
1 Scotch bonnet or habanero pepper, stemmed, seeded and minced
3 medium cloves garlic, mince
1 teaspoon yellow curry powder, preferably Jamaican
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, plus more to taste
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups low-sodium beef broth
3 scallions, thinly sliced
2 cups hot cooked brown rice


Bring a large pot of water to a boil and prepare a large bowl of ice water.

While the water comes to a boil, trim the stems off the collards at the base of their leaves. Place one leaf at a time on a cutting board, top side down, and use a vegetable peeler or sharp paring knife to shave down any thick, heavy stem that runs through the center of the leaf. Place the leaves in the boiling water and cook for 30 seconds, then transfer them to the ice water to chill completely. Place the leaves on clean kitchen towels (you may need to alternate layers of collards and towels to stack them) and pat dry.

In a large skillet over a medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil until shimmering. Add the beef and cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon as it cooks, until no longer pink, about 8 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate.

Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the skillet and reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and Scotch bonnet or habanero, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have softened, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more. Stir in the curry, paprika, allspice and cayenne and stir to combine. Return the beef to pan and stir in the thyme, salt and black pepper. Add the broth and raise the heat to bring to a boil, if necessary, then return the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has evaporated, 20 to 30 minutes. Stir in the scallions and season to taste with additional cayenne and/or salt.

To assemble, place one collard leaf on a plate, scoop 1/4 cup of rice onto the center of the leaf, followed by a heaping 1/3 cup of the meat mixture. Fold burrito-style and serve.

Makes 4 servings

Per serving: Calories 420; Total Fat 19g (Saturated Fat 6g); Cholesterol 75mg; Sodium 460mg; Total Carbohydrates 33g; Dietary Fiber 3g; Protein 30g; Total Sugar: 3g



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