Look at the beautiful collards from the Roseville Farmer’s Market last week. 2 bunches for $2! I love collard greens. I think it’s that little bitterness that appeals to me. In fact, I love the entire traditional Southern food tablescape. Slighly sweet corn bread…buttermilk fried chicken…sweet tea…Yes, please!
I make pretty traditional collards, except for one change. I consider it the California twist. Instead of using bacon, I substitute pancetta. Both bacon and pancetta are made from pork belly. The difference is bacon is smoked and pancetta is not. For this dish I like the unsmoked flavor of the pancetta just a little bit more. I have one other twist from the traditional recipe. After I cook the pancetta, I remove it from the pan and use it more like a topping after the collards have cooked. It gives a little crunch and you still get the benefit of the flavor from cooking with the fat.
Killer California Collard Greens
- 2 bunches of collard greens, stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 package of pancetta
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- One cup of water
- Salt and pepper to taste
1. Chop the pancetta and cook on medium in a sturdy pot.
2. Once the pancetta is finished, remove it but leave the fat in the in the pot.
3. Cook the onion on medium until it is translucent.
4. Add the collards, the water, and the red pepper flakes to the pot. Cover with a lid
5. Stir occasionally and lower the heat slightly to medium-low after the collards have darkened in color.
6. Cook for one hour or until the collards start to fall apart.
7. Add salt and pepper to taste
8. Either stir the pancetta back in to the collards or sprinkle on top once plated
Enjoy as a side dish.
Do you have left over collard greens the next morning? Use them in an omelette for a low carb, high protein kick to your morning.