What’s For Dinner?

Agave's Signature Honey and Cider Collard Greens


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From the Menu of . . . Agave
242 Boulevard S.E., Atlanta
404-588-0006

Q: I would love to have the recipe for Agave's honey cider collard greens; they are unbelievable.
-- Melissa McClure, Ellijay

A: Greens of some sort have always been on the menu at Agave, said managing partner Tim Pinkham, but ever since chef Richard Silvey and owner Jack Sobel created their honey and cider collards about two years ago, the restaurant hasn't tampered with success. "They've become just one of our signature dishes, " Pinkham said. "We don't dare take it off so we don't aggravate our clientele."
It's the magic trio of honey, apple cider vinegar and apple-wood-smoked bacon that thrills diners, added sous chef Shawn Herrick. "That's pretty much why they rave about them."

Hands on time: 30 minutes  Total time: 3 hours and 15 minutes  Serves: 10

Ingredients:

    1 smoked ham hock
    3 large yellow onions, divided
    3 whole bay leaves
    1 gallon water
    1 large bunch collard greens, washed, stems removed, chopped into strips
    8 ounces apple-wood-smoked bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
    1/4 cup minced garlic
    1/2 cup honey
    1 cup apple cider vinegar
    1 tablespoon salt (or to taste)
    1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or to taste)

Instructions:

In a large pot, boil ham hock, 1 onion, roughly chopped, and the bay leaves in 1 gallon water for 1 hour. Remove the bay leaves and add the collard greens.
Dice the remaining 2 onions into 1/4-inch pieces. In a separate large pan over medium-high heat, saute the bacon until crispy, about 5 minutes, then add the onions and garlic.
When the onions begin to brown, add the honey, vinegar, salt and pepper. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, then add the mixture to the pot with the collards.
Cook for about 2 hours, until collards are tender but not too soft, adding water as necessary. Cool slightly before serving.

Notes:

Pungent with vinegar yet slightly sweet and smoky, these greens are packed with flavor.

Nutrition:

Per serving: 231 calories (percent of calories from fat, 50), 10 grams protein, 20 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 13 grams fat (5 grams saturated), 30 milligrams cholesterol, 1,011 milligrams sodium.

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