[image-1]It’s day two in our four-day countdown to Thanksgiving, and with it we have the next side dish inspiration for your big Thursday meal.

If collard greens are synonymous with Thanksgiving in your household, then Chef Jeremiah Bacon’s recipe is sure to please: collard green gratin. At the Macintosh, the kitchen team blanches the collards instead of cooking them in, say, smoked ham hocks for long periods of time.

“This preserves the flavor and gives it a vibrant and rich color,” says Bacon. “They are hearty and light and special things like Manchego, pickled shallots, and marrow bread crumbs give it that extra touch.” Note: butter may be substituted for bone marrow. 

Collard Green Gratin

For the cream sauce:
1 onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
Thyme sprig
2 cups cream
Bay leaf
2 Tbs. flour
2 Tbs. butter
Rind from Manchego
Salt and Pepper to taste
Hot Sauce to taste
Lemon Juice to taste

In a saucepan, sweat onion and garlic until translucent. Add in cream, thyme, cheese rind, and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and reduce for an hour. Strain cream mixture and reserve. In another saucepan, melt butter and flour together and allow to cook for five minutes over medium heat. Slowly whisk in the strained cream until slightly thickened. Season to taste.

For the bread crumb topping:
2 cups breadcrumbs
2 Tbs. bone marrow (butter may be substituted)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Melt marrow (or butter) in a large skillet. Add in breadcrumbs and seasonings to taste. Toast gently over medium heat until browned.

For the pickled shallots:
2 shallots, thinly sliced into rings
1 cup red wine vinegar
½ cup water
1/8 cup sugar
1 bay leaf
1 Tbs. peppercorns
1 Tbs. salt

Bring liquids and seasonings to a boil in a small saucepan. Pour over sliced shallots and allow to steep for one hour. Drain and thoroughly dry shallots before assembling dish.

Final assembly:
1 cup Manchego Cheese Grated
1 bunch collards, stems removed, blanched and roughly chopped.

Add collards, grated cheese, and pickled shallots to cream sauce and stir to combine. Pour into oven safe serving dish and top with bread crumb mixture. Bake for 20 minutes until bubbling at 325°.