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Jun 30, 2008 10:39 AM

Your best Swiss chard recipes

I have a beautiful bunch picked from my friend's garden. I am embarassed to admit that, although I adore most other greens, my experience with chard has not been excellent. The last time I bothered to cook it, it tasted way more earthy than I liked. What to do with this? I want to love it. It's so beautiful.

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  1. I made a swiss chard sidedish to go with some venison a friend brought home from hunting. And, the dinner had strong flavors, but it worked.

    This is what I did, but I didn't write a recipe.
    Saute swiss charde in a little oil with just a touch of garlic. Add some pepperoni pieces and stir until slightly wilted.
    Then, I made a peppercorn gravy. This was plated with whipped sweet potatoes.

    1. I love this recipe from Epicurious, although I omit the water - the chard exudes enough liquid to cook itself. I also likely up the amounts of feta and currants a bit, but I don't measure.

      1 Reply
      1. re: pamiam

        Thanks for sharing that recipe. It looks really good. I'll have to try it.

      2. I just made a lovely side dish of swiss chard with caramelized onions and pine nuts. Here are the ingredients to make about 4 servings:

        2 tablespoons pine nuts
        1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
        1 large onion, coarsely chopped (I prefer cut in quarters and then slice thinly pole-to-pole)
        1 bunch swiss chard, about a pound, washed, leaves and stalks separated (pull leaves off the stalks by folding together along stalk and pull the stalk away like pulling a zipper)
        2 tablespoons golden raisins
        2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
        1/4 teaspoon salt
        ground black pepper to taste

        Toast the pine nuts until golden brown, set aside to cool.

        In a large deep skillet or a dutch oven heat the oil over medium-low heat, add the onions and cook them until golden brown and very soft, stirring from time to time, for about 10 minutes.

        While the onions are cooking, cut the chard stalks into strips 2 inches long by 1/4 inch wide and tear the leaves into 2-inch pieces.

        Add the chard stalks and raisins to the onions and cook them until the stalks are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir occasionally while the stalks are cooking. Once tender add the leaves and vinegar, toss all about to coat the leaves with the oil, and cook about 5 minutes or until the leaves are wilted and tender. Season with salt and pepper, transfer to a serving dish and top with the reserved pine nuts.

        3 Replies
        1. re: janniecooks

          I do something similiar with chard or with kale though I usually choose between pine nuts and raisins [whatever kind you have]. My recipe is from Spain/Cataluna.

          Once made, if you wish to "extend" it into dinner, you can toss the whole thing with some pasta [fusilli or penne, something short]---just add a touch more olive oil and toss a scoop of pasta cooking water into the veggies before you drain the pasta.

          1. re: janniecooks

            This recipes sounds wonderful but why does it have rasins in it? Why do people feel they have to throw rasins in everything. Why not finish it with a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar. Help me understand please. Rasins are great out of the box for the two year old.

            Please do not take this wrong. I am going to try this tonight with out the rasins.

            1. re: katz66

              Raisins add a touch of sweetness to counter any bitterness in the leaves and the acid of the vinegar. If you don't care for raisins just leave them out. The recipe does have balsamic vinegar added for the last five minutes of cooking. Adapt freely to your taste, it may be different than mine.

          2. I have just found a nice recipe for kale but it would probably work with chard, as well. It is marinated in coconut milk, cayenne, salt, pepper for at least 4 hours and then grilled. It is so nice and smoky tasting. Love it.

            8 Replies
            1. re: sarah galvin

              Sarah - this sounds so intriguing for kale. So, you just let it sit in that concoction and then throw on a grill? For how long do you cook and over what heat?

              1. re: rudeboy

                You marinate for at least 4 hours. The recipe says about a minute each side but I think it depends on your kale. I left it on much longer. I'll be making it again tomorrow with a more tender kale so it may only need a minute a side. I used med high heat. I forgot, there is also paprika in it. I bet it would taste nice with a smoked paprika.

                1. re: sarah galvin

                  GOOD GOD - this was so good. I served up a bunch of it at a party on the 4th. Sorry to hijack the post - this is about kale. Not sure if chard would stand up, as kale is more "meaty."

                  I used the smoked paprika instead of cayenne. It was over a fire of hardwood charcoal and pecan wood. Medium heat, though. I let the kale brown just a bit on the edges before removing. The kale was perfectly moist, but seared, almost like blanched but still to the tooth.

                  I was serving some vegetarians, and vegans, and they remarked at my creativity (I gave credit, though). Thanks so much, was a hit.

                  1. re: rudeboy

                    My kale awaits in the garden. A month or two and we're doing this.

                    1. re: rudeboy

                      I'm thrilled you liked it so much! It is my 'go to' veggie of the moment. Isn't it amazing though? I have to give credit to Vij's Indian resto in Vancouver.

                      1. re: sarah galvin

                        sarahg.... PLEASE give more detailed info on the recipe. I have both fresh kale and rainbow chard in my garden. I love kale in a curry sauce!!! Never thought of grilling kale before....

                        1. re: Phoebe

                          Hmmm - good idea to mix a bit of curry paste and take out the paprika. That would be yummy....

                  2. re: rudeboy

                    You marinate for at least 4 hours. The recipe says about a minute each side but I think it depends on your kale. I left it on much longer. I'll be making it again tomorrow with a more tender kale so it may only need a minute a side. I used med high heat.

                2. I love this Rick Bayless taco recipe, with chard plus onions, queso fresco and a tomatillo salsa.


                  2 Replies
                  1. re: optimal forager

                    I make this recipe often. It is delicious, and even my carnivore hub doesn't miss the meat in the tacos!

                    1. re: optimal forager

                      Similarly I like to make something with the chard (sauteed with red onion and a splash of cider vinegar), roasted potatoes and scrambled egg in a flour tortilla. Some queso fresco, or even feta cheese (which is what I normally have on hand) never hurts.