Tuesday, May 31, 2011

New York Times Recipe sent by a Member

New York Times

May 24, 2011
Quinoa and Chard Cakes
I’d been thinking about making a sort of “burger” with quinoa and vegetables when I saw a recipe for chard cakes in the Dining section of The Times. I combined the two ideas and came up with these quinoa and chard cakes, which you can serve as a main dish or a side. A few days later, I made the same recipe but used spinach, which is lower in sodium, instead of chard (see variation below). Top these cakes with yogurt spiked with puréed garlic.

1 1/2 pounds Swiss chard, washed and stemmed (do not discard the stems)

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 plump garlic cloves, minced, or 2 teaspoons minced green garlic

2 teaspoons cumin seeds, lightly toasted and ground

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 cup cooked quinoa

1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan (1 1/2 ounces)

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon canola oil

For serving:

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 garlic clove, puréed with a generous pinch of salt

1. Fill a bowl with ice water. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt generously and add the chard leaves. Blanch for two to three minutes until tender, then transfer to the ice water. Drain, squeeze out excess water and chop medium-fine. Add the chard stems to the water, and cook four to five minutes until tender. Transfer to the ice water, then drain and cut in 1/4-inch dice. Measure out 3/4 cup of the stems, and reserve the rest for another purpose.

Alternatively, steam the chard leaves, then the stems, above an inch of boiling water until tender. The leaves will take three to four minutes, the stems five minutes.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium heat in a medium or large skillet. Add the garlic. When it is fragrant, in 30 seconds to a minute, stir in the chard leaves and stems and the cumin. Stir together for about a minute, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to a large bowl, and add the quinoa, Parmesan and egg. Stir together.

3. Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and the canola oil together over medium-high heat in a large, heavy skillet. Moisten your hands, and shape the quinoa and chard mixture into four hamburger-size patties (or make smaller, fritter-ish patties). Carefully place the patties in the hot oil, taking care not to crowd them in the pan. Press down on the tops of the patties with the bottom of your spatula to prevent them from falling apart; if they are thick enough, they should stay together. Cook for four to five minutes on each side until nicely browned. Remove from the heat and serve.

Variation: Substitute 2 pounds bunch spinach for the chard. Stem and wash the leaves (discard the stems) and wilt, in batches, in a large frying pan in the water left on their leaves after washing. Proceed as instructed.

Yield: Serves four.

Advance preparation: The cooked chard and cooked quinoa will keep for four days in the refrigerator. The mixture will keep for a day.

Nutritional information per serving: 242 calories; 2 grams saturated fat; 3 grams polyunsaturated fat; 9 grams monounsaturated fat; 53 milligrams cholesterol; 18 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams dietary fiber; 485 milligrams sodium (does not include salt to taste); 11 grams protein

Martha Rose Shulman is the author of "The Very Best of Recipes for Health."

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Chard Tart: one of my all time favorites

This week has been cold and rainy. During weather like this, I like to return to my comfort recipes. This one is delicious and filled with chard. Yum!

Chard and Herb Tart
(Torta di Bietolo ed Erbe)
This is a popular tart in Tuscany and can include other herbs like tarragon, sage, nettles and borage.

1 lb Swiss chard, stems and ribs removed
1 ½ TBS extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced or pressed
1 15 oz container whole milk ricotta cheese
½ C freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 large eggs
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground pepper
¼ tsp minced fresh thyme
¼ tsp minced fresh oregano
1/8 tsp grated nutmeg

1 17 oz package frozen puff pastry, (2 sheets) thawed

Cook chard in a large pot of boiling salted water until just wilted, about 2 minutes. Drain. Squeeze out liquid. Chop chard. (I do this in a food processor.)

Heat oil in a heavy large skillet, over medium heat. Add garlic, sauté 1 minute. Add chard, sauté until excess liquid evaporates, about 5 minutes. Transfer chard mixture to a large bowl. Cool slightly. Mix in ricotta and next seven ingredients.

Preheat oven to 375 with rack positioned in lower third of oven. Roll out one pastry sheet on lightly floured surface to a 14 inch square. Transfer to a 9-inch-diameter tart pan with a removable bottom. Trim edges, leaving one inch overhang. Fill pastry with chard mixture. Lightly brush pastry overhang with pastry brush dipped into water. Roll out second sheet to a 13 inch square. Using tart pan as guide, trim pastry to a 10-inch round. Drape over filling. Seal edges and fold in.

Bake until pastry is golden brown about 45 minutes. Cool 10 minutes. Remove sides from tart pan. Transfer to platter, cut into wedges and serve.
Bon Appetit, May 2000

Monday, May 2, 2011

Greens and Eggs

I love almost all combinations of greens and eggs. I don't know why but I find them a perfect complement to one another. The recipe below is from Deborah Madison's cookbook "Vegetarian Cooking for Eveyone." Deborah was the chef at Greens for a while and now lives in New Mexico. I adore her recipes. I hope you like this one.

Chard and Onion Omelet (Trouchia)
by Deborah Madison

Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone
These Provençal eggs, laced with softened onions and chard, never fail to elicit sighs of appreciation. I'm forever grateful to Nathalie Waag for making trouchia when she came to visit—it has since become a favorite. The trick to its success is to cook everything slowly so that the flavors really deepen and sweeten.

Yield: Serves 4 to 6

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large red or white onion, quartered and thinly sliced crosswise
1 bunch chard, leaves only, chopped
Salt and freshly milled pepper

1 garlic clove
6 to 8 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 tablespoons chopped basil
2 teaspoons chopped thyme
1 cup grated Gruyère
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a 10-inch skillet, add the onion, and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until completely soft but not colored, about 15 minutes. Add the chard and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until all the moisture has cooked off and the chard is tender, about 15 minutes. Season well with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, mash the garlic in a mortar with a few pinches of salt (or chop them finely together), then stir it into the eggs along with the herbs. Combine the chard mixture with the eggs and stir in the Gruyère and half the Parmesan.
Preheat the broiler. Heat the remaining oil in the skillet and, when it's hot, add the eggs. Give a stir and keep the heat at medium-high for about a minute, then turn it to low. Cook until the eggs are set but still a little moist on top, 10 to 15 minutes. Add the remaining Parmesan and broil 4 to 6 inches from the heat, until browned.
Serve trouchia in the pan or slide it onto a serving dish and cut it into wedges. The gratinéed top and the golden bottom are equally presentable.

Source Information
From Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison

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