Why greens and beans on New Year's Day, you may ask? Because, as any scientist will tell you, if you eat 'poor' on the first day of the year, you will enjoy incredible financial prosperity the rest of the year! The original Utica greens do not have beans but they are such a classic combination.

Recipe Summary

prep:
20 mins
cook:
15 mins
total:
35 mins
Servings:
6
Yield:
6 servings
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Ingredients

6
Original recipe yields 6 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Wash escarole leaves in a large bowl in several changes of cold water until no grit remains.

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  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; cook escarole in the boiling water until bright green and slightly wilted, about 2 minutes. Transfer escarole to a large bowl using a slotted spoon. Rinse greens in cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain thoroughly.

  • Place pancetta and olive oil into a large oven-safe skillet over medium heat; cook until browned and crisp in spots, about 5 minutes. Stir jalapeno peppers into pancetta; cook and stir until peppers start to soften, about 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.

  • Pour chicken broth over pancetta mixture, bring to a simmer, and season with salt and black pepper to taste. Gently stir beans into skillet. Mix escarole into mixture, turn off heat, and top with 1/2 cup bread crumbs. Stir until crumbs are still visible but most are incorporated. Season with red pepper flakes. Top with 2 tablespoons bread crumbs followed by Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese; drizzle top with 1 tablespoon olive oil.

  • Set oven rack about 6 inches from the heat source and preheat the oven's broiler.

  • Place skillet under broiler and cook until top is golden brown, 2 to 4 minutes. Serve immediately.

Cook's Notes:

You can drain some of the rendered pancetta fat if it looks like it's going to be too much. You want about 2 tablespoons total rendered fat pancetta in the casserole.

You can substitute cannellini, butter, or white beans for the cranberry beans, and prosciutto for the pancetta.

Nutrition Facts

307 calories; protein 12.3g 25% DV; carbohydrates 25.2g 8% DV; fat 18.3g 28% DV; cholesterol 18.6mg 6% DV; sodium 575.9mg 23% DV. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (6)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
08/16/2014
This recipe is delicious! I've made it as is a couple of times with huge compliments. Last night we made it with just harvested collard greens. Really you NEED to make this! Don't change a thing the first time. Read More
(5)
11 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 9
  • 4 star values: 2
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
08/16/2014
This recipe is delicious! I've made it as is a couple of times with huge compliments. Last night we made it with just harvested collard greens. Really you NEED to make this! Don't change a thing the first time. Read More
(5)
Rating: 5 stars
09/27/2015
I have made this a few times but we do not like very spicy foods. I used one small red cherry pepper and the pinch of red pepper flakes and it still had a nice kick. I used cannellini beans also. Very awesome recipe. Read More
(2)
Rating: 5 stars
02/18/2020
Absolutely delicious. The only change I made was I used a specialty bacon from a local smokehouse instead of pancetta. The bacon is smoked with ghost peppers and added the perfect amount of heat! ??? Read More
(2)
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Rating: 4 stars
03/30/2019
Being from WNY we make this on the regular. Adding and subtracting ingredients based on what s in the pantry. I use jarred hot cherry peppers and usually add quartered artichokes. Love it as a side or main dish.. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
01/26/2019
My ex s mother made this. I find to be an energy boost during the cold months. Not a fan of kale but besides the escarole I include collard green and Swiss chard just for the nutrients. The one thing I noticed in following her no othe recipe includes smoked ham hocks. These add flavor as well as a lot of collagen. delicious. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
07/21/2018
Love this dish with a little alteration. It is an Italian dish made in Utica New York. Very Italian population. Read More
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