Rainbow Chard with Parmesan, Pine Nuts & Basil

photo 1-33Happy Wednesday, Y’all! I hope you had a wonderful long Memorial Day weekend! A big thank you to all our Veterans and Military for all you do and sacrifice! One of my fondest memories growing up was watching my grandfather march in his Marine uniform in the Litchfield Memorial Day parade. Memorial Day also officially kicks off SUMMER (and the right to wear white pants!) not to mention lots of BBQs, camping, outdoor activities and lawn games of every kind. This past weekend I went down to southern Utah to explore some of the hidden gems in our state. The longer I live here the more I realize just how cool our state is.

You could spend your whole life visiting the National Parks in Utah and still you wouldn’t see everything the state has to offer.

Last week we received our first CSA delivery from Urban Farm and Feed. We got so many delicious things including fresh eggs, kale, arugula, radishes, oregano and my favorite Rainbow Chard. Look how beautiful it is!

I didn’t even enhance these photos, the chard is naturally this amazing color! What I love about the CSA (other than its local, fresh and amazing) is sometimes you get produce that you wouldn’t normally buy at the store and you are forced to cook something totally new. I am planning on taking you with me on my CSA journey of fun new vegetables, so stay tuned all summer long for great ideas and recipes for your produce, whether it’s from the farmers market or your CSA!

So lets kick off this summer party with some Rainbow chard. This recipe is super easy and takes just a few minutes to saute up. It goes great with chicken, steak, burgers, fish… well just about anything. I hope you enjoy! photo-584

Rainbow Chard with Parmesan, Pine Nuts & Basil (Serves 4)

  • 13 to 14 oz. Rainbow chard (about 1 large bunch)
  • 1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tbs. pine nuts
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbs. minced garlic (about 2-3 cloves)
  • 2 Tbs. sherry (or dry white wine)
  • 1 Tbs. cold unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves (8 to 10 large)

Directions:

  1. First, wash and dry the chard leaves and stems. Cut the stems from the chard leaves. Cut the leaves into 2- to 3-inch pieces. Slice the stems crosswise 1/4 inch thick.
  2. In a medium sauté pan or skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the pine nuts and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pine nuts to a plate, leaving behind as much oil as possible.
  3. Return the pan to medium-high heat, add the chard stems and a pinch of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until shrunken and beginning to brown lightly, 6 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 15 seconds.
  4. Add the chard leaves, 1/4 tsp. salt and sherry. Toss with tongs until just wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. (If using a skillet, you may need to add the chard in batches, letting the first batch wilt before adding more.)
  5. Remove the pan from the heat, add the butter pieces, Parmesan and basil, stir to combine.
  6. Using tongs, immediately transfer to a serving plate. Sprinkle toasted pine nuts and extra Parmesan if desired. Serve immediately.
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Absurdly Addictive Asparagus

I hope all of you are recovering from your turkey comas and excess family time. Its weird how a 4 day vacation that revolves around eating can make you feel like you need a vacation after your vacation (or at least a gym membership). I had a wonderful weekend of eating, skiing and relaxing (and cooking) with Jake and friends. This recipe is one of my favorites from Food52 – which is literally one of the best cooking websites I’ve ever been to. You really can’t go wrong with pancetta, leeks and asparagus… So enjoy this Absurdly Addictive Asparagus recipe that is super simple and a guaranteed crowed pleaser (for your next holiday gathering) or a quick fix on any night! Enjoy!

Absurdly Addictive Asparagus (Click for Printer friendly version)

Ingredients:

  • 4 ounces pancetta, cut into 3/8 inch to 1/4 inch dice
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 pound asparagus, woody ends trimmed and sliced into 2 inch pieces
  • 1 1/4 cup leek, thinly sliced crosswise (white and pale green parts only)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
  • 1-2 tablespoon Italian parsley, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

First, chop pancetta, asparagus, and leeks and set aside. In a large non-stick pan, saute pancetta, stirring frequently until golden brown and slightly crispy.

Add 1 tablespoon of butter to pan. Add asparagus pieces and leeks and saute until asparagus becomes tender, about 5 minutes.

Add garlic, lemon and orange zest, toasted pine nuts and parsley and saute another 1-2 minutes until fragrant and asparagus has reached desired tenderness. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately. This dish can be served along side just about anything! The citrus flavors of this dish work perfectly with a simple linguine with shrimp and lemon oil recipe that I love!

A French baguette to push it all onto your fork does the trick!