Collard Greens with Ham Hocks

Photo courtesy of the Food Network

3 bunches (~5 lbs) fresh collards
6 strips of bacon, diced
1 large onion, peeled and diced
1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons salt
2 meaty ham hocks

Remove the tougher, woody stalks from the collard leaves.  Wash the leaves and cut them into half-inch-wide strips.  Rolling the leaves like a cigar helps speed the process.

Put the bacon in a stock pot over high heat to render the fat, ~3 minutes. Add the onion and cook until translucent, but not brown, ~5 more minutes.  Add the collards and cover with cool water. Add the pepper flakes, salt and ham hock. Bring to a boil, then drop to a simmer. Cook for at least 2 hours.  Taste for salt. Remove ham hocks and pull meat from the bone, roughly chopping it. Add back to the pot and stir.

Yields 8 servings.