We just kicked off the fall cooking season with a big pot of smoky, spicy collard greens. Boy are they good! There's nothing quite like tender, juicy collard greens to get us in the mood for winter cooking. Have you ever made collards? No? Here's the recipe we use, and a few more good tips on collards.
Collard greens are a classic Southern food, of course; hot and spicy collard greens go naturally with hoppin' john, cornbread, and pulled pork. They are also a great autumn and winter green; they're hearty and hardy, and they grow late in the season. They also don't cook down as much as spinach and chard; they keep their toothsome edge even after a long braise, so they're a really delicious main dish.
The classic way to cook collard greens is with pork: we like bacon or salt pork, although a ham hock is probably more traditional. Here's the recipe we use for our big pots of collard greens: