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Collard Greens - from OK Cafe

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From the menu of . . . OK Cafe
1284 W. Paces Ferry Road, Atlanta

Q: Just wondering if by any chance you can get the recipe that OK Cafe uses for its collard greens. Several of us agree that theirs are the best in town.
-- Marlene Peacock, via e-mail

A: There are collards, and then there are collards. The ones served up at the OK Cafe are definitely in the second category. The secret ingredient that makes them so distinctive and, in your judgment "the best in town," has got to be the honey.

Hands on time: 5 minutes  Total time: 2 hours and 5 minutes  Serves: 8


    1/4 cup ( 1/2 stick) butter
    1 medium onion, sliced lengthwise
    1 ham hock
    1 quart water
    1 tablespoon sea salt
    1 teaspoon ground white pepper
    1 pound honey
    5 pounds collard greens, washed, stems removed, and chopped into 1-inch pieces (or use a 3-pound bag of pre-washed and stemmed collard greens)


In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onion and ham hock and cook, stirring constantly, until onions become translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the water, salt, pepper and honey and bring to a boil. Add the collard greens and return to the boil. Reduce heat to maintain a low simmer and cook until tender, about 1 hour and 45 minutes.


Yes, the amount of honey is correct (1 pound!). It's sweet, but, surprisingly, not cloying, as you might assume. If you don't have much of a sweet tooth, though, you could certainly cut it back to suit your taste.


Per serving: 306 calories, 5 grams protein, 7 grams fat (percent calories from fat, 20), 63 grams carbohydrates, 20 milligrams cholesterol, 945 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber.

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