Chard is a tall leafy green vegetable commonly referred to as Swiss chard and scientifically known as Beta vulgaris. Chard belongs to the same family as beets and spinach and shares a similar taste profile with a flavor that is bitter, pungent, and slightly salty. Swiss chard is truly one of the vegetable valedictorians with its exceptionally impressive list of health-promoting nutrients.
Swiss chard-along with kale, mustard greens and collard greens-is one of several leafy green vegetables often referred to as "greens". It is a tall leafy green vegetable with a thick, crunchy stalk that comes in white, red or yellow with wide fan-like green leaves.
Chard has a thick, crunchy stalk to which fan-like wide green leaves are attached. The leaves may either be smooth or curly, depending upon the variety, and feature lighter-colored ribs running throughout. The stalk, which can measure almost two feet in length, comes in a variety of colors including white, red, yellow and orange. Sometimes, different colored varieties will be bunched together and labeled "rainbow chard."
We will sometimes pick the chard young and bag it as "Baby Swiss Chard". Cooking the baby chard is the same as the larger chard.
Ribollita Manson (Tuscan Stew)
yield: 12-16 servings
Notes: Here's a recipe that we tried this week that everyone in our family loved and gobbled up - so just to remind you that is everyone ages 2, 3, 6, 10, 13, 15, and two 40 year olds (the baby isn't eating our food yet - she's only 9 months). This recipe serves between 12 to 16 but you can easily cut the recipe in half for smaller families. Heats up great the next day also.
CSA Soup With Barley
yield: 8-10 servings
Notes: Veggies listed can be substituted with whatever's in the box and tastes good cooked. A great way to use all the veggies and get some greens in your diet. The barley adds substance and heartiness.
Steamed Chard with Candied Ginger
yield: 2-4 servings
Notes: From a CSA member, "I made a light, full meal from the "Chard and Candied Ginger" recipe. I added a good serving of finely chopped firm tofu, sautéed it with the garlic and onion, put in a little arugula and stuffed it all into a pita."