❶ Place one pound of smoked ham hocks and six quarts of water in a stockpot and bring to a boil.
❷ Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for two and a half hours, or until ham hocks are tender.
❸ Rinse two pounds of collard greens. Cut the leaves from the stalks, then place the leaves in cold water and sprinkle them with salt to taste.
❹ After soaking, rinse the leaves three times.
❺ Cut the leaves into thirds.
❻ Using tongs, remove the cooked ham hocks from the stockpot and add the collards to the hock’s broth. Sprinkle the broth with one teaspoon of sugar and return the ham hocks to the pot.
❼ Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Cover and let simmer for 55 minutes, then add one teaspoon of red pepper flakes and salt and pepper to taste.
❽ Simmer for an additional five minutes, or until tender.