Last week I made what is probably one of our most quintessential examples of being Southern and Jewish: collards and matzoh balls as a side dish. It’s really a two-way dish because you can have it all together or you can drain the pot likker (or pot liquor, however you like to spell it) off the greens and use it as a soup base for your matzoh balls.
* 1 package beef bacon (or, you could use regular pork bacon if you’re not going kosher-style), each slice cut into thirds
* 1 big bunch collard greens, torn into pieces – you could use any kind of greens, though…mustard, turnip…
* 64 oz (two boxes) Organic chicken broth
* Matzoh ball mix (I make **everything** by scratch in our house…except matzoh balls.)
Over low heat in a stockpot, add the bacon, increase the heat, turn and cook until crispy. The bacon will go back to limp once you add the stock, but you want to be sure the bacon cooks through and will give all that good flavor to the greens first:
Add the washed and torn collards, then the chicken stock:
Bring to a boil, then let simmer for at least an hour. In the meantime, make the matzoh balls and when the collards have cooked to your liking, roll pieces of the matzoh ball mix to the size of a pecan and add them to the pot. Bring the heat up to high so everything comes up to a boil, then cover and put the heat on simmer. I usually let the matzoh balls cook for at least thirty minutes. Here they are all plumped up:
There aren’t many things better than pot likker-infused matzoh balls with collards…
I was watching some show the other day about people who enter eating contests, and looked it up, and the International Federation of Competitive Eating has a listing for matzoh ball champion. Eric Booker ate 21 baseball-sized matzo balls in 5 minutes, 25 seconds. The same man is on the list for eating 50 hamentaschen in six minutes! Yeah. I will not be trying that!