Bowl of pot likker is accompanied by a corn muffin.

Pot Likker

Pot likker is the broth retrieved from the pot in which greens have been boiled, usually along with plenty of fatback, bacon, or salt pork. It is an intense one-two punch of tonic vegetable and unctuous pork, customarily served in small portions as an appetizer or side dish. With cornbread and an extra measure of salt pork, it can be a meal unto itself (in which case this recipe will yield four portions).

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 0 Servings
Ingredients
  • 3 lbs fresh turnip greens
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 lb salt pork, cut into small cubes
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • Hot sauce
Method
  • Remove the heavy stems and thoroughly rinse the greens. Rinse them twice again (grit can be a problem). Combine the water, salt and pepper and bring it to boil. Add half the salt pork, then the greens, mixing as they wilt. Cover the pot and simmer one full hour.
  • Fry the remaining salt pork over medium heat until crisp.
  • Thoroughly drain the cooked greens, saving all the liquid. Greens may either be chopped or left whole.
  • Combine the liquid in which the greens were cooked, the fried salt pork and drippings, the chicken broth, and 1-2 cups of the cooked greens in a saucepan. (Any remaining greens can be refrigerated and served later.) Simmer 5 minutes, adding salt, pepper, and hot sauce to taste.

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