Tuesday, 22 October 2013 22:31

Great ideas for cooking Swiss chard

Once you’ve discovered that these impressively large leaves are not only super healthy, but also super tasty you’ll want to keep cooking Swiss chard.

What is Swiss chard? Why is cooking Swiss chard so fantastic?

Swiss chard, just like beets, spinach and quinoa, belongs to the chenopod family and continues to show an increasing number of health benefits. It is one of the healthiest vegetables rich in vitamin A, K, and C, second only to spinach. Despite its name it actually comes from Sicily.

Its uses are very similar to that of spinach but I find cooking with Swiss chard adds more flavor. There are different kinds of Swiss chard – the kind with white ribs has a slightly bitter note, the one with red ribs is a bit sweeter – see which you prefer. Here a brief chard 101 to give you a better idea.

Cooking Swiss chard

Just like spinach, Swiss chard is perfect for gratins, casseroles, omelets, soups, pasta dishes, pastry pockets, Asian dishes, dips or just as a healthy light main dish.

The thick stems are just as tasty but even cut into small pieces they’ll take a bit longer to become tender than the leaves so it’s best to start cooking them a bit before the leaves.

Cooking Swiss chard – sautéing

It’s delicious simply sautéed with onion and garlic, but you can also add a bit of broth or sauce, white wine or sherry, cream, cheese or feta cheese, mushrooms, raisins or other dried fruit, leek, tomatoes, olives, nuts, lemon zest, chili,

Cooking Swiss chard – other ideas

  • The whole leaves work beautifully to wrap fish or chicken (tied with some kitchen string) for Asian dishes, simmered in a sauce of your choice or coconut milk.
  • You can also use boiled chard leaves and make spring rolls, filled with rice and finely chopped, sautéed other vegetables.
  • I’ve also used it at Mary’s Dinner Club to make the most amazing lasagna
  • Try it in a yoghurt dip, sautéed, blended and mixed with herbal salt and cranberries this makes for an amazing combination of flavors.
  • Swiss chard also makes for an exciting pizza topping – just drop it into some boiling water first as this releases some of its acidity.
  • A popular Mediterranean way of cooking Swiss chard is to sauté it with onion and garlic and then mix it with boiled black-eyed beans and some broth to give it the consistency of stew.
  • It’s also beautiful in a warm salad with caramelized onions and nuts

cooking Swiss chard

If you are now inspired to frequently cooking Swiss chard, you may even consider growing your own… For some info and tips on growing  chard, have a look here

Mary Anglberger

I’ve been travelling the world for over 20 years teaching English and am now taking time to follow my passion for photography and writing. I want to share all the things, events and people that have inspired and inspire me and spread those positive vibes all around.

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