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Once the first frost kisses the collards, they are ready for picking. We get entire plants, cut at the base like cabbages from certain roadside stands & use 'em all! Big flat heavy leaves are every bit as good as tender inner leaves if done right. Some folks cut out the center ribs on the bigger leaves - we prefer to string out the strings & snap the stems up. We were also taught not to cut a collard, they are to be torn after soaking in 3 sinkfuls of water to remove any grit. Start the braising pot a the evening before cooking collards, to give the ham hocks time to cook down. Don't be daunted by the amount - collards do cook down a lot! Remember to serve with cornbread to sop up the pot liquor - this can be a full meal for collard lovers. Dig in! For the pork averse, 5 or 6 smoked turkey wings may be substituted but they lack tha "jes right" flavor of ham hock. Interestingly, ham hock is very low in fat & provides more flavor in the form of gelatin (like oxtail) - apparent only after chilling the pot liquor! ***make a big batch as these freeze great in freezer bags for later use***
Units: US | Metric
Serving Size: 1 (429 g)
Servings Per Recipe: 10
The following items or measurements are not included:
smoked ham hocks