Southern-Style Spaghetti with Collards and Bacon

This recipe adds a Southern style twist to a traditional Sicilian dish that combines pasta with collard greens, raisins and pine nuts. For our recipe, we added bacon and red onions and replaced the raisins with dried apples, the pine nuts with pecans and finished the dish with a sprinkling of freshly ground black pepper.

Southern-Style Spaghetti with Collards and Bacon

Southern-Style Spaghetti with Collards and Bacon

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

A Southern-style twist on a classic Italian concept, this recipe combines whole wheat spaghetti, ribbons of collard greens, bacon, pecans and dried apples.

Ingredients

  • 10 ounces whole wheat spaghetti
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 lb collard greens, washed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup dried apples, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pecans, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Put a pot of salted water on to boil.
  2. Slice the stems from the collard greens, halve the leaves lengthwise and layer them in stacks of 6 or 7. Roll the leaves tightly from the short end, and slice them into ribbons about 1/4-inch wide.
  3. Add the collards to the boiling water and cook until wilted and tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain thoroughly and set aside. Refill the pan with salted water and bring to a boil again for the spaghetti.
  4. Fry the bacon in a large pan until crisp, transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and drain all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan.
  5. Add the olive oil to the bacon fat and heat over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the onion and continue cooking until soft and translucent, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Add the vinegar, chicken broth and apples, combine well, then add the collards and toss together with tongs. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Cook the spaghetti according to package directions, drain and add to the collard mixture. Add the bacon and pecans and toss to combine.
  7. Plate individual servings and top with freshly ground black pepper. Serve immediately.