Adapted from Toni Tipton-Martin’s cookbook Jubilee, this version of Pepperpot soup just sings with flavor from collard greens. Pepperpot soup has a long and varied history. Despite its popularity in America from being mass marketed by Campbell’s Soup as Pepper Pot and depicted in Andy Warhol’s canned soup paintings, it can be traced to first being made in West Africa. Islands in the Caribbean also have their own versions of this flavorful soup. Rich with flavor from what was locally available, this hearty soup can feed a crowd!
1 lb mixed greens like collards or kale
1/4 lb salt pork, finely diced
1 cup onion, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1 fresh hot pepper like habanero, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp thyme
6 cups chicken stock
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 lb okra, cut into ½-inch pieces
1/2 lb crab (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped parsley for garnish
Wash the greens, trim the stems (if needed), and chop into 1-inch pieces. In a Dutch oven, cook pork over medium heat until fat is rendered, about 15 minutes. Remove browned bits from pan and set aside on paper towels to drain. Stir in onion, celery, and hot pepper, cooking 5-7 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and stir for 30 seconds. Mix in chicken stock and reserved browned bits of pork. Bring to a boil over high heat and reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes. Add greens, sweet potato, and coconut milk. Return back to a boil and simmer again until tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in okra and cook for 10 minutes. If using crab, add during the last 5 minutes of cook time. Season to taste with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.