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20140916_192658

My daddy said I tried to kill him. True story. He was convinced I set out to end his life. It all started with a pot of collard greens.

Ribs and collard greens. They kind of go hand in hand. It reminds me of a meal Fred Sanford would appreciate. He had a very discriminating palate you know. While he wasn’t keen on Puerto Rican food, “If God wanted us to eat Puerto Rican food, he would have lined our stomachs with Pepto Bismol”, he adored good soul food…just like my daddy. Daddy was a perfect cross between Fred and old Archie Bunker. 🙂

My daughter Tiffany and I made weekly visits to daddy’s house “in the city”. As he aged, I began delivering meals to him with all of his favorite things he no longer had the energy to cook for himself. One of those things was nice, fresh pots of collard greens.

One Sunday we spent the day with daddy and I had taken him a rack of ribs and collards to enjoy throughout the week. Lord knows it was a gracious plenty! Later that night I received a phone call from his neighbor letting me know daddy had been rushed to the emergency room with severe pain in his chest. I knew it was a heart attack.

It took close to two hours to get dressed, and make the long drive to the hospital. As we walked in the ER, I expected the worst. I saw daddy and as I ran to him, he immediately began yelling for me to stay away! “Daddy are you ok? What in the world?”

“You just stay away from me! Go on now! This is all your fault!” yelled daddy.

“How can a heart attack be MY fault?” I screamed back.

“This is no heart attack. It was those damn collard greens! You tried to kill me and it damn near worked!” he screeched.

As I held back what I knew was going to be an uncontrollable fit of laughter, I calmly asked, “Daddy, how much of the pot did you eat?”

His response. “It wasn’t that many…I ate them all.”

Collard greens. Lethal Weapon V. Who knew?

20140916_192358

Apple Cinnamon Oven Ribs & Country Collard Greens

Pork Ribs:

  • 1 rack pork ribs
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 1 small container applesauce
  • 1 tbsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. Smoked Paprika

Collards:

  • 2 bunches collards
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 ham-hock
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Salt & pepper to taste

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Ribs:

Remove thin membrane from underside of ribs. Salt & Pepper ribs generously. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Then wrap tightly in aluminum foil. Place in the oven at 275 degrees for 8 hours. Remove from oven and allow to rest 15 minutes. Place remainder of ingredients in a pot on the stove and bring to a soft boil over medium heat. Remove from heat.

Unwrap ribs and place on a roasting pan. Slather with sauce. Broil for 5 minutes and slather with additional sauce. Return to broil until ribs are cherry red. You can also finish these off on a grill for about 10 minutes for best flavor.

Collards:

Remove stems from greens. Place greens in a pot with chicken stock, vinegar, sugar and ham-hock. Do not add salt until the last five minutes of cooking. Adding salt at the beginning of cooking vegetables will make them tough. Cook on the stovetop for about two hours on medium low heat or until you reach desired consistency and texture. Add more salt for more saltier flavor, more sugar for a sweeter flavor.

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Life is too short to eat ugly food and drink bad wine y’all.