Howdy, ya’ll! Today I have for you my recipe for Collard Greens. I made these the for the first time about a year ago and came out fantastic. These are by far better than anything you can get at a restaurant. Or, any restaurant that I have had them at, that is. Normally when I order them they end up coming out well, flavorless. Even at one of my favorite southern restaurants, Cracker Barrel where you would think they would nail this one. Now, no offense to any of you’s that like this sorta thing, it just isn’t what I fancy. So here I have a flavorful Southern staple my way:
Oh yea, while these were cooking away it smelled just like my Grandma’s house. For the recipe you will need
1 ea Package Collard Greens, already chopped and rinsed for you!
1 ea Package of Ham Hocks, you can find these near the ham section, I look for the biggest ones with the most meat
2 ea Chicken Stock, boxes
2 Tbls Garlic powder
2 Tbls Onion powder
2 Tbls Butter
Seasoned Salt and pepper to taste
First, open up the ham hock package, put large pot on stove over medium heat. When pot is hot gently place ham hocks in pot and get a good sear on all sides.
When seared, add the chicken stock, garlic and onion powder to the pot. Put the lid on the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a high simmer and let cook for at least 1 hour but I recommend 2 hours. Take out the ham hocks with tongs and set aside. Open the package of collards and place handfuls at a time into the liquid. Add the entire bag and stir in the liquid so everything is immersed. If there isn’t enough liquid to cover the collards just add some water until just covered.
Add 1 Tbls of season salt and few good cracks of fresh black pepper. Add 1 Tbls of butter as well. Bring this up to a simmer and cover. Let simmer for 1-2 hours until desired tenderness. While collards are cooking you will need to pick the meat off of the ham hocks once they have completely cooled. This can be a bit tricky and you really won’t get much meat off but any little bit counts. Try not to get any of the gristle. When you’re done picking the meat add it to the pot at any time.
Once the greens are to your desired tenderness, this will take at least 1 hour, taste and adjust seasoning if needed. I normally will add more seasoning salt and the remaining 1 Tbls of butter just before serving. These are amazing and they make so much that I am able to freeze leftovers for two additional nights! I hope you enjoy this recipe. What smells from your favorite dishes remind you of your childhood?
The aroma of these collards simmering away all day brings me right to my Grandma’s back porch in North Carolina!