Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Collard greens with bacon recipe

I didn't always like collard greens.  I know, I know, I'm a bad southerner.  I wasn't ever a picky eater (I even tried to like the loofah that my grandmother cooked as an experiment), but I was incredibly sensitive to bitter foods and beverages.  I thought coffee was disgusting (and still don't drink it), literally gagged on beer until a couple of years ago, and never understood how my parents enjoy tonic water.  I also didn't like dark chocolate (the horror!), grapefruit, or greens.  Luckily some of that has changed and I now have an intense love for dark chocolate, can enjoy the occasional grapefruit, and like greens in moderation.  And just as I was starting to enjoy beer, the gluten issue came about... oh well.

Because I was "stuck" in Florida for a few extra days over the holidays, I was able to enjoy black-eyed peas with my parents on New Year's Day.  Unfortunately the meal didn't include collard greens (I was too sick to really care at the time), but I decided to make up for that this week.  These were really good.  Make sure to add plenty of hot sauce - I love the spice and extra vinegary twang, and it also provides just enough salt for my taste.  And this is one of the few times when I don't like the idea of using oil instead of bacon.  Sure, it will still taste good, but it just won't be the same.

Collard greens with bacon (adapted from Simply Recipes)
(Printable version)

2 slices bacon, chopped into small pieces
1 onion, chopped
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 lbs collard greens, large stems removed and leaves chopped
1 cup water
generous amounts of Tabasco, to your taste (I used about 15 dashes)

Heat a large pot over medium heat, add bacon, and cook just until bacon starts to brown.  Then add the onion and cook until it's tender.  Pour in vinegar and cook for a few minutes, until vinegar has reduced.  Then add the greens, stir to coat with the vinegar, and add the water.  Cover the pot and cook until greens are very tender (about 15 min), stirring occasionally.  Remove lid and continue to cook until all of the water has evaporated, and then season with hot sauce.  Serves 4.


Tasty Eats At Home said...

I grew up in Texas, but I never tasted collard greens until I was grown and out on my own. A co-worker once brought a huge bunch of them (along with leftover fried chicken) for her lunch, and offered them to me. Oh my, I was in love. Bacon-brothed greens, with that touch of Tabasco? Yum!!! I see you and I are alike on how we enjoy our collards. These are definitely a Southern dish worth cherishing. Now, if I can figure out some gluten-free fried chicken, we'll REALLY be in business!

Sally Parrott Ashbrook said...

Katie, I'm digging your blog. I haven't added anyone to my blog's list in 100 years, but I'm going to go add yours now!

We had hoppin' john and collards for New Year's Day. When I skip the bacon for it, I use smoked paprika in it to get at least some of the flavor. Tamari also helps, though I haven't been able to eat that for a couple of years.

Katie said...

Alta - Now you're talkin'! I recently saw a recipe for gluten-free fried chicken, but I can't remember where it was. I'll try to find it again...

Sally - I love comments like these and I'm so glad that you're enjoying my blog! I love the idea of using paprika or tamari instead of bacon - I will definitely give that a shot next time I make collards.