(serving size: 1/4 cup)
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
1 large head of Escarole
Apparently, this is famous in upstate NY, where some say "a restaurant is only as good as its Utica Greens," which is what this is.
Cut the stem end off escarole so it falls into leaves, and drop the washed leaves into boiling salted water, and leave them for about five minutes. Pull them out, drain them and cool them. When they're cool enough to handle, squeeze out the water, and chop them roughly.
Chop up six cloves of garlic, 4-6 hot vinegar peppers (how many depends on you), and a quarter pound of pancetta or prosciutto, or any smoked pork product (vegetarians can probably leave this out). Also, grate 1/3 -1/2 cup of pecorino cheese and add an equal amount of dry unflavored bread crumbs to that.
Turn the oven to broil, and let it heat up.
In a big pan, add a slick of olive oil, and then add the garlic, and the pork. Cook this until the pork just begins to crisp up. Add the peppers and the escarole, and toss the stuff together. Off the heat, stir in about 2/3 of the cheese and breadcrumb mixture, and then put everything in an oven proof dish. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese and bread crumbs over this, and broil it until it just colors.
It's sort of an amazing dish. I almost ate the whole pan of it.