Southern Collard GreensMonday, February 21, 2011
In developing my Southern Menu (in case you missed it, I was Paula Dean for Valentine's Day), one of the healthiest things I could come up with for my menu was collard greens. I mean, seriously, the words southern and healthy don't go hand in hand, so anything green on the menu is healthy enough.
On that note, these collard greens are cooked in bacon fat. Please don't skimp on the bacon, because it really gives the greens that extra flavor that it so desperately needs. The very definition of southern collard greens is allowing the greens to soak up the rendered flavors of the fatty meat as it cooks.
Southern Collard Greens
8 slices bacon, chopped into pieces
1/2 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 pound fresh rinsed collard greens, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
4 cups chicken broth
1 pinch red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 tablespoon cidar vinegar
1/2 tablespoon brown sugar
1. Stir Fry Ingredients. Heat up chopped bacon over medium-high heat. Allow bacon to crisp for about 3-5 minutes, and add onion to cook in the bacon fat. Once the onion softens, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds before adding the collard greens. Toss the greens, bacon and onions together as the oil coats the greens. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Fry until the greens start to wilt.
2. Add Chicken Broth. Pour in chicken broth, allow broth to boil. Add vinegar and brown sugar. Reduce heat to low, cover and shimmer for 30-45 minutes, until the greens are to your desired tenderness. Serve.
For my southern dinner, this dish was one of the dishes that I prepared the night before and it serves just as well the next day. Just microwave or heat on top of the stove before serving! Also, the vinegar and brown sugar are important in this recipe as it cuts out some of the bitterness of the greens, so make sure to use it!