Chard is one of my favorite greens. Unlike other greens, chard stems (and ribs) take well to sautéing. You can sauté the stems of other greens too, but many of them are woody and fibrous so you have to chop them very finely and cook them for a longer time to soften them.
You can also bake chard stems. Toss them with olive oil, a few smooshed garlic cloves, salt and pepper, then top them with parmesan cheese and bake until they’re tender.
When I was little my dad went on a Swiss chard kick. It’s all a fuzzy memory now but I remember rows and rows of chard in our backyard garden. I suppose we must have overdosed on it that summer because I don’t remember seeing it much on our table while growing up.
Jim grew a much more reasonable amount of chard last year in our front yard. We live amidst trees so we don’t get many patches of sun in our yard, otherwise we would probably grow a lot more of our own produce. I say “we” but frankly I’m not much of a gardener, yet. I’m an ace at growing herbs in pots because I’ve been doing it for years and years on city balconies. Maybe one of these years I’ll get the real gardening bug.
It’s strange that I haven’t yet because I love weeding. Last Sunday, Jim and I along with a bunch of other family members went to his mother’s for our spring Yard Day. I am the designated weeder because I can do it for hours. I find it very relaxing. But no, sorry, I don’t want to come over to your house to weed–I get asked that a lot.
Braised Rainbow Chard with Dried Cranberries
You’ll need a large sauté pan with a lid.
- 1 bunch rainbow chard
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup water
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Slice along stem/rib of each chard leaf and cut away the stem. Cut stems into 1-1/2” pieces. Slice leaves into 1” ribbons.
Heat olive oil in the pan over medium-low heat. Add onion and chard stems, sprinkle with salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion softens, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, cook 1 minute. Add cranberries, chard leaves and water. Season with salt and pepper. Cover, and simmer on low heat until the chard stems are tender, about 10-15 minutes. Check every now and then to make sure the chard isn’t sticking to the pan, if it is, add a bit more water.
Original recipe: Braised Rainbow Chard with Cranberries, Serious Eats
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