Clapping On The Down Beat

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Try It Tuesday August 30, 2016

Filed under: Meal Planning,Step by step — clappingonthedownbeat @ 7:01 AM

Collard Greens.

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Collards are in the cabbage family and is an edible leaf that was also used as an ornamental garden plant (like the popular kale).  I think they are over looked.

Many southern recipes will start with ham hocks and then cooking the collards down.  This is a very delicous dish, but today I am taking an Italian twist.

Start with diced pancetta.  Cook till it is crispy and some of the fat has rendered out.

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See all the bown coloring on the bottom of the pan?  That is called fond- and its all flavor.  The best way to “clean a pan” is to deglaze.  Remove the crispy pancetta and set aside.  Add some chicken stock or broth, about 1 1/2 cups- 2 cups and scrape the bottom of the pan. Let the  stock/broth simmer.

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Next strip the leaves off the stem of the collards.  I stack the leaves and roll them, then cut into strips.

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Wash the leaves really well.  Then add to the simmering liquid.

DSC_0006Let the pot simmer for 45-60 minutes.  Stir every once in a while just to make sure there is a little liquid in the bottom.  If needed add a little more stock/broth.  When its is all cooked down finish with some chopped garlic, about 3 cloves.  Add garlic at the end so it doesn’t burn.  Cook for about 1 minute till the garlic is fragrant and then add the pancetta back in and a few dashes of red wine vinegar.

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Makes a great side dish with some pasta, or polenta.  If you take a southern route then serve it with cornbread, mac and cheese and some pan fried chicken.  It is an overlooked, delicous and nutritious vegetable.

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