For a long time I’ve been making southern style cooked greens. I learned how to make these when I was in school back in Nacogdoches, Texas ((Yes, it really is in the middle of nowhere.)) from a friend’s mom. I never wrote down a recipe and I just kind of keep making it with little changes here or there. This is the recipe as I’m currently cooking
it. ((I’ve cooked it at least three times this year, it’s popular))
2-3 large bunches of chard (red or yellow chard are my favorite) or kale or any big leafy green.
around ^1^/~4~ lb. of ham hock, smoked ham, or smoked pork neck pieces (optional)
- hot sauce (Frank’s Red Hot, other than Tabasco if you can)
cayenne powder (optional)
In a large pot place the pork in large chunks and about 4 cups of water. To the water add between 2-4 tbsp. of hot sauce (add more if you like, to taste, don’t go nuts at first). Add about 4 tsp. salt (maybe start with half that and bring it up to taste) and 2 tsp. of pepper. Add about ^1^/~2~ to 1 tsp. of cayenne powder if you like. Start to heat on medium heat while you do the rest of the work.
Wash and clean the greens. Cut the tips of the stems off. Take 3-5 leaves and stack them up. Start at one edge of the leaf stack and roll the leaves lengthwise into a tight bundle. Cut the leaf bundle across every half inch or so. This will form little circular bundles of leaves (when unfurled the pieces will have leaf, stem, leaf).
Put all the cut leaves into the pot. Add more water to fill the pot to just below the level of the leaves (make sure not to fill the pot up too far, the leaves will cook down).
Turn up the heat to medium-high and bring the pot to a boil, then turn it down to medium-low and keep it at a simmer for at least an hour. Let them cook for two hours if you can.
Strain from the pot and serve with or without the ham if you put it in.