OLS Week 3

or, “Swiss Chard, not sure I like ye”

This may not make the deadline this week, but here goes.

Another vegetable that’s new to us this year is Swiss Chard (“Bright Lights”). I didn’t know at what point you’re supposed to harvest it, but we decided to give it a go this week.

I took the leaves off the stems, diced the stems and boiled them in homemade chicken broth. I rough chopped the leaves and sauteed them in oil with salt and garlic powder, then mixed the stems and sauteed leaves together.

The verdict… eh. The stems were tasty, tender and infused with flavor from the broth. But the leaves were pretty strong tasting and nobody liked them.

So not sure if Swiss Chard just isn’t our vegetable, or I simply need a different way of preparing it. If you have a good chard recipe please leave it in the comments for me! I’m not ready to give up on it yet :)

We also made onion rings with some onions from our friend (and veterinarian and down-the-road neighbor) Dennis; SCF hamburgers; and steamed zucchini from the garden (can’t get enough of that!)

Local Ingredients:
Zucchini, hamburger, chicken broth, Swiss Chard,
eggs for the onion ring batter – 0 miles
Onions from Dennis – 2 miles

Nonlocal:
Other batter ingredients for the onion rings, salt, oil, garlic powder

Wrapped up the county fair today, had a really great week, updates coming tomorrow!

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8 Responses to OLS Week 3

  1. Stacie says:

    man, that is local! i too have little love for the chard… and it’s so pretty, it seems like it wants to be loved! i think the secret is ham hock and long long long time a-cooking…

  2. karl says:

    we love swiss chard here. steamed whole eaten like spinach. tristan demands that we chop the raw stems to put in his tuna sandwiches like celery.

  3. farm mom says:

    You can use swiss chard as a replacement in any spinach recipe. One of my favorites is chard pie because you can serve it for any meal, and a slice or two reheats in the microwave easily for a quick lunch. This recipe comes from From Asparagus to Zuchinni written by Madison Area CSA:2 T olive oil1 1/2 cups chopped onions1 T minced garlic or several chopped scapes1 very large bunch or 2 medium bunches swiss chard, spinach or other green6-8 eggs2 cups milk or half & half1 t salt2 8 inch deep dish pie shells2 cups grated cheddar or swiss cheesechopped ham, cooked bacon, diced tomatoes, chopped basil, blanched peas, or green beans (optional)1-2 T chopped fresh dillHeat oven to 400 degrees. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium flame. Add the onions and the garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender. Add chopped greens and cook, stirring often, until they wilt. Turn off heat. Beat eggs, milk, and salt in a bowl. Spread chard mixture in bottom of pie shell. Add cheese. Pour egg mixture over top. Add one or more of the optional ingredients, if desired. Sprinkle with the dill. Bake at 400 until the pies are no longer jiggly in the center, 30-40 mins. Makes 16 slices.

  4. Jamie says:

    I usually do pretty much what you did for chard–only I use lots and lots of fresh garlic. Let it get nice and soft. You might try crumbling some feta cheese in with it at the end, and/or topping it with some poached eggs. Mmm!I’m probably no help because I like chard a lot. Your mileage may vary. :-)

  5. frugalmom says:

    I made a pretty good swiss chard side dish. If you go to my blog and hit recipe on the sidebar you will see it. Try it out! The kids loved it.

  6. e4 says:

    My favorite way to eat chard is in a salad. But to do that it should be used when it’s still small and tender. Once it’s bigger, we use it as a spinach substitute. (Or use the stalks as a celery substitute sometimes.)

  7. meanders says:

    I love swiss chard, too, and it is one of the reasons I HAVE to have a garden. We steam it like spinach and try to pick it when it is young and the leaves aren’t too monstrous.

  8. gtr says:

    I LOVE chard. We definitely steam it, too, but not too much. Maybe try harvesting it when it is a little younger? I find the red stemps especially are sweet; you can eat them like celery!