In case you haven’t noticed lately, I am on a vegetable kick. I am trying to sample every single vegetable known to man. There aren’t many I haven’t tried. This weekend at the grocery store, I happened upon some gorgeous looking swiss chard.
I have never made swiss chard before, but heck, for 99 cents for this huge bunch of it, I wanted to try it.
My mom and dad took one look at it and thought it was something else.
Actually swiss chard can have red, white or yellow stems, unlike rhubarb.
And if I’m not mistaken, you will die if you eat rhubarb leaves or something? Aren’t they toxic?
Swiss chard is a relative of spinach, but it has a distinctively different taste. It’s a little more bitter, but when cooked, mellows out and is really very good. I read a little bit on the nutritional value of it, and while I won’t bore you with health facts, let me just tell you that it’s the king daddy in the nutrition department.
I’ve found with greens that I really like them simply sautéed with some aromatics.
Start by heating 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Chop up one-half of a red onion and dump it into the oil and sauté them in it, stirring them up a bit.
Let them soften in the oil for about 3 or 4 minutes. While they’re cooking, cut up your chard.
You can actually eat the stems and they’re pretty tasty too! Just chop them up and then slice across the leaves in thin strips.
By now your onions should be nice and soft. Add the chard right in with them. Press in two cloves of garlic. If the pan looks dry, just drizzle in a bit more oil. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper. I also sprinkled on about a quarter teaspoon of crushed red pepper. It’s not too hot, but it just …works well!
Gotta love takin’ pictures of steaming food.
Pop the lid on your pan and let these wilt down a couple of minutes.
Take the lid off and stir every couple of minutes. The entire process should take about 10 minutes. You want your chard to be softened but still have a little crunch to it.
And that’s it. If you want, and you are a balsamic fan and like a little acidity to things, sprinkle on just a touch of this when you serve it.
This is such a good, healthy and quick side dish to fix. I enjoyed the flavor of the chard, maybe even more than spinach.
I am well on my way to trying every vegetable under the sun. I can check this one off my list.
- 1 bunch swiss chard, stem and leaves chopped
- 2 T. olive oil
- ½ red onion, chopped fine
- 2 cloves garlic
- ¼ t. salt
- pinch of pepper
- ¼ t. red pepper flakes
- Saute onions in oil over medium heat, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add chard and remaining ingredients.
- Cover pan and cook, stirring every few minutes, about 7-8 minutes.
- Serve warm. Drizzle balsamic vinegar over if desired.
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