Collard greens are very low carb for a generous portion and are usually quite inexpensive. I frequently buy a nice big bunch for less than $2 and if you store them in the following way, they’ll stay good and fresh for well over a week in your fridge.
First, wash your leaves very well in cool water, removing any debris or ick you might come across. Pat them with a paper towel so they’re not drippy. A little wet is alright. Take your leaves and remove the stem from the bottom of the leaf, then using a sharp steady knife, cut through the center of the leaf. If you have an extra wide leaf or two, no worries! Cut the center of the leaf the same way, but then cut lengthwise through the leaf to make narrow strips.
After you’ve done this to a few leaves of similar size, layer them on top of each other and roll it up. Slice through the leaves, making strips about a half an inch wide. They don’t have to be exactly uniform.
If you’re not making all of them right now, put 2 plain paper towels (I use Bounty Basic) in a gallon size freezer bag. Use the cheapest ones you can find. Pile your cut collards into the bag, close it up and put it in the crisper drawer in your fridge. Anytime you want a quick side of collards, they’re right there washed and ready to go. Oh, and write something on the label. Collards are quite bitter raw, and you don’t want someone mistaking them for the lettuce they thought they saw you putting in the fridge… woops!
Finally, the cooking part. Very simply, slice up some bacon into small strips. I mostly use beef bacon in my home, but regular pork bacon, or turkey bacon will work just fine. I used Oscar Mayer Reduced Sodium Turkey Bacon here, since that’s what I had on hand. I much prefer the taste and texture of that one over their regular turkey bacon (if you find yourself having to use turkey bacon).
Take your bacon sstrips, and if using turkey bacon, put them in a warm skillet with a tablespoon of regular olive oil. If you’re using regular bacon, skip the olive oil and just use the bacon drippings for the next step. When your bacon is almost crisp, add your collards to the skillet and saute them until they are dark green and tender but not too long that they burn. You could throw in some thin sliced onion or a little minced garlic right before putting the greens in the pan. Season your greens when they’re tender and off the heat. I stick with just sea salt and pepper, or once in while, a little bit of Sylvia’s Sizzlin’ Hot Spice (in a lot of super markets, I love the stuff). I always have a dollop of sour cream on the side, it just rounds it all out for me.
Typically I pair up my greens with some roasted chicken thighs like I did in the pic on the top. To do that, heat your oven to 425 (218 C). Season your thighs with sea salt, pepper, garlic powder and dried oregano. Put them in a large glass baking dish, with space in between each one, don’t crowd them or they’ll boil and not roast. Drizzle a little olive oil on top of each one and put them in the hot oven uncovered for at least an hour, to an hour and fifteen minutes. They’re ready when the skin is super crisp (not burned) and you have fabulous golden drippings. Light yellow drippings and the skin is still a little soft, put them back in the oven. Try to resist the urge to eat the crispy skin right out of the oven. It is ethereal to say the least, but it’ll burn up your mouth pretty good. Give it a few minutes to cool. You can use the drippings to flavor anything you want to make taste good, even drizzle a bit on your greens!