If you’re trying to incorporate more leafy green vegetables into your diet, you may be feeling a little bored with spinach and kale. Besides lettuce, what other leafy greens are there?
The answer to your veggie blues may be Swiss chard!
Chard is often overlooked. Which is too bad, because it’s incredibly diverse, super easy to prepare, and oh-so-colorful. It’s traditionally used in Mediterranean cooking, but that shouldn’t limit the way you use it in your own kitchen.
Here’s how to cook Swiss chard for an easy, vibrant addition to your next meal.
How to Cook Swiss Chard
No matter how you choose to enjoy it, you’ll likely need to prepare your chard the same way every time. After washing the leaf, hold it stem side up in one hand and run a sharp vegetable knife down each side of the stem to separate the leaf. Most chard recipes call for just the leaf. The stems are more fibrous and chewy, but don’t throw them away! Chop and steam them for 3-5 minutes to soften them up.
For the leaves, the easiest (and fastest) way to prepare them is to slice them into 2-inch wide strips and steam for 2-3 minutes, or until they become soft and bright green. I love dressing my steamed greens with a dash of toasted sesame oil, ume plum vinegar and sesame seeds for an Asian twist. Lemon and mayonnaise are also excellent additions to steamed chard.
Thanks to its mild flavor, you can substitute chard for spinach in a lot of recipes. Try adding it to smoothies, soups, frittatas or pasta. You can’t go wrong with this rich, satisfying Swiss Chard Gratin recipe.
Another Way to Enjoy Swiss Chard
Raw chard leaves make an excellent tortilla substitute with twice the nutrition! Just add your fillings of choice to an uncooked chard leaf (with the bulk of the stem removed), wrap it up like a burrito, and enjoy. Try this recipe for Sunflower Chard Wraps for a light, refreshing lunch or snack.
Add Chard to Your Weekly Menu
Now that you know how to cook Swiss chard (and how to eat it), it’s time to make it part of your meal rotation. If you’re a personal chef client, ask us about adding chard to your upcoming menus.
Not a client yet? No problem! Contact us here to set up a weekly meal service and start enjoying chard along with a multitude of other seasonal goodies.