Last week I found myself with an abundance of Swiss Chard; between my delivery of farm fresh organic produce and my neighbor offering me chard from her garden (I never turn down homegrown produce!), I had enough chard to feed an army; but my kitchen is only serving 2 at the moment, so I was in a bit of a dilemma, albeit an enviable one. You know (I hope) that all dark leafy greens are nutritional powerhouses, but how to prepare them so they taste good possibly has eluded you. Bored with just adding leafy greens to stir-fries, I began searching through my cookbooks and the internet for some inspiration.
Today I’m sharing a super easy, quick, sauté of swiss chard with plump raisins to add a little sweetness to the earthy greens. Not only is this dish a worthy, healthy side to any protein, it can serve as a complete vegetarian meal when complemented with wholesome brown rice, or glammed up as an elegant, savory pastry appetizer or indulgent bread basket offering when rolled into flakey, buttery puff pastry.
Swiss Chard with Raisins
Swiss chard is very popular in the Mediterranean and nutrient-rich. The addition of sweet, plump raisins makes this leafy green seem like an indulgence.
1 large bunch of red or green swiss chard, about 10 small leaves
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
red pepper flakes
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ red onion, chopped
dash of red wine vinegar
Plump the raisins by pouring ¾ cup of boiling water over them and soaking for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare chard by cutting out the center spine, chop and set aside.
Roll up the leaves and cut into strips, then chop crosswise.
Heat large pan over medium heat, add olive oil and sprinkle of red pepper flakes, sauté chard stems for about 2 minutes until softened, add onion and garlic, sauté until onion is softened, about 3 minutes. Add chard and sauté until tender, about 4-6 minutes. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water as needed to prevent sticking.
Drain raisins and stir into mixture. Add a 2-3 dashes of red vinegar, stir to combine.
For the pastries: Defrost one sheet of puff pastry. Preheat oven to 400〫F. Blend 1 egg with 2 tablespoon water. Spread the chard mixture on the puff pastry sheet, leaving a ½ inch along each long side without filling. Gently fold the pastry sheet over the filling along the long side and begin rolling up. Brush the end with egg mixture to seal. Cut into ¾ inch rounds. Place cut side down on cookie sheet lined with parchment. Brush with egg mixture. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Makes about 12 pinwheel pastries.