Recipes so Easy Even a Caveman Could Make Them: Collard Greens

Simple, in season, and delicious.  Why the heck wouldn't you get down on some collard greens?


1 large bunch of fresh collard greens (literally an "arm full")
2 smoked ham hocks (find them in the deli section of your local grocery store)
Liquid smoke (the natural kind)
Fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tsp baking soda

Step 1: Boil your ham hocks

Toss your ham hocks in a large pot and cover with water.  Bring to a boil and let it rip for at least 30 min.  While this is going on, move on to step 2.

Step 2: Wash your greens

Toss the greens in your sink and rinse thoroughly with water.  They grow in sandy soil so they probably have a good amount of grit on them.

Step 3: Prepare to chop

Grab a handfull of washed greens and line them up so that all the stems are on one end.

Step 4: Cut your greens

Starting at the leafy tip, slice the greens with a sharp knife and smooth "tip to base" action.  Stop slicing when you get to the "more stem than green" part.

Step 5: Sort your greens

Save the stem for soups, sautees, smoothies, salads, whatever.  Collards are in the same family as broccoli and they have a similar flavor.  Also, wasting food is bad karma.

Step 6: Toss them in the pot

Add the baking soda to the water and then begin tossing handfulls of greens in.  Smash them down with a wooden spoon and just keep adding more as they wilt down.

Step 7: Season and simmer

Once all of your greens are in the pot, season them with a few dashes of liquid smoke, toss the pecans in, and crack some fresh black pepper over them.  Cover and leave them alone for at least 45 min.

Step 8: Enjoy!

Serve your greens with a few dashes of good quality hot sauce or just eat them plain.  They go great with all sorts of other foods and you will have plenty of leftovers.
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About Unknown

Tony is the host of the Paleo Magazine Radio podcast, author of "Paleo Grilling: A Modern Caveman's Guide to Cooking with Fire", and Cofounder of Powerful PT, an innovative information resource for Fitness Professionals. He has appeared on numerous local and national television and radio broadcasts and regularly hosts healthy cooking workshops and informational lectures. He is also a full-time Personal Trainer and Wellness Consultant who lives in Jacksonville Florida with his wife Jamie.
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  1. Hi, great recipe. I've also found that adding a couple tbsp of apple cider vinegar really reduces the bitterness and adds a subtle sweetness. Otherwise, our techniques are almost the same!

  2. I'm a big fan of apple cider vinegar and I'll definitely try adding some next time I cook up some greens. Thanks for the tip!

  3. Very similar to the recipe I received (after having some to die for at a party) and make. I do the apple cider vinegar thing too, and also add in red pepper flakes for a bit of a tang that stops short of being hot.

    Great blog btw!

  4. Glad you like the recipe AND the blog! It's nice to get feedback from a fellow blogger such as yourself!