Sometimes I get a bit carried away at the market. I just can’t help it. When I see gorgeous vegetables, I get sucked into believing that I actually have the time to cook all the massive amounts I’ve just thrown into my cart. I stock my refrigerator on Mondays and sometimes I can barely close the door without giant carrot stems, broccoli heads or leafy greens trying to get back out… as if to say “please don’t forget about me!”
And so, here we are at the end of the week and there was my chard still sitting there in the fridge… in despair. I was not going to let these beauties go to waste. So, with only 40 minutes until the mad dash to get the kids at school Friday afternoon, I was determined to make these powerhouse greens our dinner.
I’ve talked about the powerhouse fruits and veggies before. They’re the ones most associated with reduced risk of chronic disease (see: Preventing Chronic Disease/ CDC), and chard reigns #3 on the list. One cup of cooked chard is only about 35 calories and contains nearly 100% of the RDA (for both men and women) of vitamin K, along with high concentrations of vitamins A, C and E. So in other words, you’re getting lots of bang for your buck when it comes to nutritional value.
Rainbow chard is one of my favorite greens to cook with. Their bright beautiful stems and bold flavor mellows out so perfectly when sautéed with garlic and some good quality extra-virgin olive oil. But, to give the dish more substance, I thought it would be amazing to sauté the greens in a bit of white wine (hey now), sweet grape (or cherry) tomatoes and cannellini beans. Top with shavings of parmigiano reggiano. You really can’t go wrong with ingredients like that! Within 15 minutes you can have a deliciously warm and inviting rustic meal on your table. Dip some toasted crusty bread into the garlicky broth created by the tomatoes, wine and oil. You can thank me later.
- 5-6 packed cups roughly chopped rainbow chard with stems (about 2 bundles)
- 15 oz. can cannelloni beans (rinsed and drained)
- 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes (halved)
- 4 cloves garlic (smashed with skins removed but left whole)
- ⅓ cup white wine (good quality wine you would drink)
- parmigiano-reggiano cheese for topping *optional
- ¼ tsp chili pepper flakes
- kosher salt
- 3 tbsp olive oil + more for drizzling
- warm or toasted rustic bread *optional
- Heat olive oil in large sauté pan over medium high heat.
- Add garlic cloves and chili flakes and sauté for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add chard and a pinch of salt and sauté about 2 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, wine and beans and simmer (while stirring occasionally) for about 5-8 minutes until chard is wilted and tomatoes have slightly broken down and released their juices.
- Portion into bowls and top with some thick slices parmigiano cheese* and drizzle with olive oil.
- Serve with toasted bread.*