five ingredient swiss chard sauté

Hi there, did you go to your local farmers market this weekend? I did! I was pleasantly surprised to find swiss chard. Swiss chard is loaded with vitamin C and A and can be found year round but is considered best July-November.

 farmers market perk: this literally GIANT bundle of rainbow chard for just three dollars

farmers market perk: this literally GIANT bundle of rainbow chard for just three dollars

In addition to some great farmer's markets, Baltimore has amazing food. In Highlandtown there is an Italian marketplace called DiPasquale's. The first time I went there with my mom and my sister I was worried I would miss out on the deliciousness since sandwiches, pizza, pasta were off limits.  Boy was I wrong! 

 Pasta-free eggplant lasagna

Pasta-free eggplant lasagna

 Swiss chard, pancetta, and mushrooms

Swiss chard, pancetta, and mushrooms

This swiss chard dish is not on their main menu but they usually have it, in some variation, as a special.  I've recreated it several times for myself. So here you go, super easy, 5 ingredient (plus spices) veggie dish!


Swiss Chard Saute

Ingredients

  • 1 bundle of swiss chard (green, red, or rainbow, your choice!)

If you end up with a ginormous bundle like I did here then simply double the recipe!

 There were at least 12 giant leaves in this bundle. I split it in half and made two  separate batches of this recipe so that my sauté pan didn't overflow.

There were at least 12 giant leaves in this bundle. I split it in half and made two  separate batches of this recipe so that my sauté pan didn't overflow.

  • 1/2 of a large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 oz sliced cremini or white mushrooms (optional ingredient)
  • 4-5 slices of nitrate-free bacon OR 1.5 tbsp of bacon fat
 I buy my bacon at Trader Joes.

I buy my bacon at Trader Joes.

  • 4 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1-1/4 tsp red pepper
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • cracked black pepper

Directions

1. Rinse the swiss chard and pat dry. Cut the leaves like this:

 Cut out the thickest part of the center stem.

Cut out the thickest part of the center stem.

 This is what the leaves should look like when you're done.

This is what the leaves should look like when you're done.

 DO NOT toss the stems- I have a tip for you at the end! No waste here.

DO NOT toss the stems- I have a tip for you at the end! No waste here.

Put the strips into a bowl lined with a paper towel to soak up any excess water.

2. Chop up your bacon and cook in a frying pan. If you don't have any fresh bacon on hand melt bacon fat. (I save the fat after I cook bacon on the weekends so I always have some in the fridge)

3. Once the bacon is cooked (or the fat is melted, like pictured below) add the garlic. Once the garlic is fragrant add your onion and cook until it is translucent and then add the mushrooms. 

4. Add the chard to the pan and pour the olive oil on top. It will wilt so don't worry about the volume.

5. Gently flip and stir so that all of the chard touches the pan and wilts. Then, add the spices (red pepper flakes, salt and pepper) and continue to sauté to disperse the spices evenly.

 When it starts to wilt, add the spices (note: this batch didn't have bacon in it)

When it starts to wilt, add the spices (note: this batch didn't have bacon in it)

6. Once the leaves have wilted, EAT! This dish has healthy fat and lots of veggies. It makes the perfect side, particularly with chicken.


Real FoodCourt's no waste tip: Save the stems from your chard. Chop them up and sauté in butter and add to your egg bake. This week, I made my egg bake with Italian sausage and used the chard pieces as my veggie. Yum Yum! Italian flavors for breakfast are delish!


Let me know how the recipe comes out! And remember, you can find all of these ingredients at your local farmers market (including quality bacon) so go ahead, support local and eat real food