It's Called Soul Food for a Reason

It is called soul food for a reason & I have my own definition too.  To me, soul food is feel good food.  It reminds me of my grandmother's & mother's kitchens.   Old school southern cooks are some of the best around.  Do you think they worry about fat, sodium, or calories?  Um, no.  No they don't.  They want you to leave full and happy.  The biggest insult to a soul food cook is for you to leave hungry.  If you want bland, soul food is not for you.  Anyway, who wants bland?  Not I, said the pig. 

In case some of you are not from the deep south & wonder what in the world is soul food, I found a great website that describes what it is.  I love the line that says:  "...all soul food is southern food, but not all southern food is soul food".  Amen to that.  If you've never eaten soul food, I'm so sorry.  It's homemade with heaps of love, so you an have happiness on your plate. 

I love collard greens, but they have to be cooked right.  (as all soul food has to be)  I want to thank Ms. Shaun from the school where I sub a ton for her recipe.  I made some tonight & they were delicious!  I always thought collards were hard to make, but they weren't.  Elizabeth came downstairs from studying & said the kitchen smelled good.  Of course it did, I was cooking greens!

I, of course, forgot to get all the ingredients from the grocery store.  I remembered to get the greens, yea, but forgot the salt pork or ham hock.  For the love.  (Insert eye roll here.)  Luckily, I have bacon grease in my fridge, and I knew it would work in a pinch.  I like lots of pot liquor, so I added more  chicken broth than she recommended.  I have the recipe below in case you want to try your hands at some feel good food.

Celebrating life & good food,
~ashley

Collard Greens
1 bag collard greens, washed & cut up
2 cups chicken broth
1 large smoked ham hock (or if you're like me, bacon grease)
pepper
salt
creole seasoning
garlic powder
onion powder

Combine everything but greens & bring to a boil.  If you use a ham hock, allow to cook down.  If you use bacon grease, you will need to let the ingredients boil.  Add greens, turn heat down to medium to medium low.  Place lid on top of boiler & cook until reduced down and tender.  Serve with corn bread.

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