Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, which is celebrated on the third Monday in January, is the perfect time to serve great southern food. Two very popular southern dishes are greens – collard, turnip, mustard, kale – and of course, grits. This fabulous casserole combines the two. The beauty of this dish is that it can be made ahead, refrigerated, and baked when it’s convenient. Although it’s okay to cook the grits over the stove, stirring for what will seem like hours, the slow cooker is, by far, the most convenient and easy way to cook them. They can be put in the slow cooker at night, and will be perfect in the morning and ready to be put into this casserole or just served for breakfast.
Many warehouse stores feature baby kale in large bags; the greens are small enough that they don’t have to be chopped, and they are perfect for this dish. Collards are also available frozen, and are quick and convenient; use at least a one-pound package, but two is even better.
Sriracha is a favorite hot sauce and can be found in the Asian section of most larger grocery stores. It’s quite hot, so add it to the grits according to personal tastes. Other hot sauces can be substituted, or, for those with small children or who happen to be wimps, it can be left out altogether.
1 cup grits, regular, non-instant
5 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons granular chicken bouillon
1 to 2 tablespoons Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
2 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese, divided
1/2 pound bacon, chopped
1 cup onions, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 to 2 pounds collard greens, kale, mustard, or turnip greens, washed and chopped
- Place the grits, water, and salt in the crock of a 2 1/2 - 3-quart slow cooker.
- Stir, set the slow cooker to high, and let cook 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
- Stir, turn the setting to low, and let cook an additional 4-6 hours. Alternately, cook the grits according to the instructions on the grits package.
- Meanwhile, cook the bacon until crisp; remove the bacon from the pan and drain all but 2 tablespoons of the fat.
- Add the onions and stir-fry about 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and greens; stir well and add the chicken broth and salt.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, turn down to a simmer, and let cook until the greens are tender.
- When the grits are smooth and creamy, mix the chicken bouillon, Sriracha, eggs, and 1 3/4 cup of the grated cheese; stir into the grits.
- Preheat oven to 350°; spray a 9 x 13" glass casserole dish with non-stick spray.
- Pour 1/2 of the grits mixture into the prepared pan.
- Spread the greens over the grits and top with the remaining grits; sprinkle with the reserved 3/4 cup of cheese and bacon.
- Bake 20-30 minutes or until bubbly.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 217 Calories from Fat 111
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 51% Protein 20% Carb. 29%
Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 12 g
Saturated Fat 6 g
Cholesterol 66 mg
Sodium 704 mg
Total Carbohydrate 16 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 11 g
Vitamin A 44% Vitamin C 23% Calcium 0% Iron 4%