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Collard Greens with Guanciale and Chiles

Serves 4 to 6

Total Time
1 hr 15 mins

Craig Stoll of Delfina in San Francisco jokes that the non-traditional greens with classic Italian seasonings make this dish "Southern/Italian--as opposed to southern Italian." It's worth it to track down guanciale--rich, sweet Italian-style bacon--and fruity, hot Calabrian chiles.

su-Collard Greens with Guanciale and Chiles

Photo: Yunhee Kim; Styling: Robyn Valarik
 1 cup (7 oz.) guanciale* or thick-cut bacon cut into 1/2-in. dice
 2 pounds collard greens, stems and ribs removed
 2 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly smashed
 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
 1 small dried chile such as arbol
 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
 1/4 teaspoon pepper
 2 Calabrian chiles* packed in oil and vinegar or pickled piquillo peppers, thinly sliced
Step 1

Bring guanciale and 3 cups water to a boil in a small saucepan, then cook at a rapid simmer 10 minutes (5 minutes if using bacon) to render some fat. Drain, reserving 2 cups water. Blot guanciale dry.

Step 2

Boil collard greens gently in a large pot filled three-quarters full of water until tender, 18 to 20 minutes. Drain, rinse with cool water, and drain again. Coarsely chop.

Step 3

Cook garlic in oil in a large frying pan over medium-low heat until sizzling, 2 to 3 minutes. Add guanciale; cook 2 minutes, then transfer garlic to paper towels. Continue cooking guanciale, stirring often with a long-handled spoon (it may spatter), until crisp, 6 to 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels.

Step 4

Break arbol chile in half, add to oil in pan, and toast until puffed, 1 minute. Add greens, reserved garlic, and salt and pepper and stir until coated. Add reserved cooking liquid and cook over medium-high heat until most of liquid evaporates but greens are still juicy, 10 to 15 minutes.

Step 5

Stir in guanciale. Spoon greens into a dish and scatter Calabrian chiles on top.

Step 6

*Find guanciale and Calabrian chiles on or from an Italian deli or grocer.

Step 7

Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.

Nutrition Facts

Servings 0

Amount Per Serving
Calories 186Calories from Fat 76
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 16g25%

Saturated Fat 4.4g23%
Cholesterol 16mg6%
Sodium 284mg12%
Total Carbohydrate 7g3%

Dietary Fiber 3.5g15%
Protein 5.3g11%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.