The South in a bowl (Greens, black eyed peas, okra and tomatoes and pork)

I have been cleaning out my freezer in anticipation of hurricane season.  I am kind of hoping for a baby hurricane this year so I am sure I am doing this in vain.  I am not wishing another Katrina or anything on us, but just enough to get a day off work for a hurricane party and bring down housing prices.  A girl can dream right?

I had some pickle meat in my freezer.  I was going to make red beans, but I already showed you how to make those.  I needed a blog post!  I also didn't just want to make greens too, I showed you that too.  I needed something different.  

I saw an article on Southern Living about the best Southern bloggers to follow (new goal!) and decided to follow a few of the food ones I hadn't heard of before for some inspiration.  I visited Southern Plate and found this recipe and awesome post and had to make it.   Gumbo greens sounded so good and then I would substitute pickle meat for the ham hock.  I also follow a great new blog called Dash of Herbs.  She had a post the other day for easy vegetable gumbo with black eyed peas and kale.  This looked delicious as well.  Wait a minute, why not combine them?!  Collard Greens, pickle meat, okra and black eyed peas in one bowl? It is like the South in your Mouth!

This was so delicious.  I mean so delicious.  I tried it out on picky coworker who would never eat something like this in a restaurant and she loved it.  I even successfully hid the bell peppers she hates and can usually pick out!  The flavor combination works so well and the pork is tender and melts in your mouth. You can use 1 lb. pork stew meat and marinate it in 1/2 cup of white vinegar for a few hours if you can't find pickle meat. This is a crowd pleasing comfort dish you must make as soon as possible.  This would work in the slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours and you can save more time by getting pre chopped onions celery and bell pepper.  Full recipe after the montage.

I mean how delicious does that look?  I wish I was having this now!
The cast.  I forgot the bacon grease.  Well actually it was an afterthought!
I haven't chopped onions like this in awhile!
Then chop the next step of the trinity, green pepper.  Cut it small to hide it from particular eaters!
This celery is at least two weeks old and still looks better than the celery in my Blue Apron box!
Throw in four chopped green onions to the mix.
I know, I have a problem.
I thought I'd make this even more southern and use bacon grease out of the Mason Jar in the fridge.
Pickle meat looks a bit like tuna!  If you haven't had this treat you are missing out!
Saute your trinity for 7 minutes to wilt and then add your garlic.
Add 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper.  I was worried this would be too spicy but my tester said it was not.
Add the pickle meat and stir to cook on all sides.
Wash your greens and take them for a spin in the salad spinner.  
Pork is looking good!
Throw in the greens and some chicken broth and cover.
After 20 minutes you will be amazed how much they have shrunk.
Add your beans and tomatoes and okra.
Simmer for another 15 minutes to cook everything through and tender.
And voila, the south in a bowl!
The South in a Bowl (Adapted from a combo of Southern Bite and Dash of Herbs)

1 tablespoon fat (bacon grease or oil)
1 bunch collard greens, washed and chopped
2 cups chicken broth
1 pack pickle meat, cut into small pieces (or sub a smoked ham hock)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 piece of celery, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1 can okra and tomatoes
2 cans black eyed peas

Saute your onions, celery and green pepper in the fat in a large dutch oven for 7-10 minutes until translucent and tender.  Add the garlic and saute for one minute.  Add the pork and stir to cook on all sides, about 10 minutes.  Add collards and broth and cook for 20 minutes. Add okra and tomatoes and black eyed peas.  Cook another 15 minutes until everything looks tender. Serve over rice or by itself.

Happy Cooking!


I added this post to the Meal Plan Monday Linkup at Southern Plate and Southern bite.  Check it out here

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