What a cheerful veggie. Rainbow chard has crisp-tender stalks in bright yellow, pink and red, and dark green; and just-a-bit bitter, deep-dark green leaves. It’s a versatile way to get your dark leafy green fix– sturdier than spinach, and mellower than kale–chard is a star of so many dishes. It’s awesome on its own, with currants and raisins, or mixed into Israeli couscous, fava beans, or risotto.
It’s ridiculously, incredibly healthy. Chard is a packed with calcium, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin A and beta-carotene, as well as the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, which are great for your eyes and vision. Low in calories, high in fiber, this is a nutritional rockstar.
There’s so many highly delicious ways to work chard into your meal. Here’s a staggeringly simple side that is a good friend to poultry, pasta and meat. Eat healthy this year? Check!
- 1/2 cup Fairway extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 4 pounds rainbow chard—stems removed and chopped into 1 inch legnths, and leaves cut into 2-inch ribbons
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1/2 lemon
- In a large pot, heat 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Stir in the garlic and cook over moderately high heat until lightly golden, about 1 minute. Add the chard leaves in large handfuls, allowing each batch to wilt slightly before adding more. Season the chard with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until the leaves are softened and most of the liquid has evaporated, about 8 minutes. Transfer the chard to a bowl. Wipe out the pot.
- Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pot. Add the chard ribs and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the wilted chard leaves and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl, sprinkle with the lemon zest and serve right away.