Posts Tagged ‘Chard’

Smoky Butter Beans & Greens

We’re eating our way through lockdown but still making a vague attempt at keeping healthy on weekdays. This approach has been slightly more successful this week than others! We used some leftover chard for this but spring greens would also be good and it’s pretty much store-cupboard stuff after that.

Wine Suggestion: given the mild nature of this dish it weirdly works with Prosecco Rosé made from the Raboso grape. Raboso can be fierce and awkward, especially made as a red wine, but the light extraction of colour and addition of residual sugar in Prosecco can (but not always) make a charming, food friendly wine; choosing a good producer is suggested.

Smoky butter beans & greens – serves 4

  • 200g brown rice
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 200g spring greens or chard, roughly chopped (if using chard, cut out the stalks and chop into short lengths, then roughly chop the leaves)
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 400g tin butter beans, rinsed and drained
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • natural yoghurt, to serve

Rinse and cook the rice. We use a rice cooker but you can cook in a pot according to the pack instructions or cook in salty boiling water for 20-25 minutes, then drain.

Heat 2 tbsp of the olive oil in a large, deep frying pan with a lid. Add the greens, season with plenty of salt and pepper, then cover and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring now and then, until wilted (if you are using chard, add the stalks first and cook for a few minutes before adding the leaves).

Add the garlic and cook without the lid for a few minutes, stirring. Add the butterbeans and stir until heated through, then add another tbsp of olive oil, the cumin seeds  and the smoked paprika. Stir to combine and allow the flavours to come together, then serve over the rice with some natural yoghurt.

(Original recipe by Celia Brooks Brown in BBC Good Food Magazine, May 2010.)

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Crispy Chickpeas & Lamb with greens and garlic yoghurt

We made this Alison Roman dish because we had Rainbow Chard kindly given to us and as often happens, we discovered a gem. Crispy lamb and chickpeas – a divine combination!

Wine Suggestion: we think this goes with more serious Gamay: one of the Beaujolais Cru’s, like Moulin au Vent, Brouilly or Morgon. It needs good fruit, depth to the tannins, earthiness and freshness, without crunchy acidity.

Crispy chickpeas and lamb with greens & garlicky yoghurt – serves 4


  • 240ml full-fat or 2% Greek yoghurt
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely grated
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice


  • 1 large or 2 small bunches of Swiss chard or kale
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • 350g lamb mince
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 400g tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • Tomatoes, quartered – to serve

To make the garlic yoghurt combine the yoghurt, garlic and lemon juice in a small bowl and season with salt and black pepper.

Separate the leaves and stems from the greens, then slice the stems and roughly tear the leaves.

Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the lamb, garlic and cumin and season with salt and black pepper.

Break up the lamb as it cooks until brown and crispy – about 8-10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the lamb to a bowl.

Add the rest of the oil, the chickpeas and red pepper flakes to the frying pan and season. Cook until the chickpeas are well browned and starting to crisp up – about 8-10 minutes. Return the lamb to the pan and toss together. Transfer to a large serving dish.

Add the chopped stems to the frying pan with some seasoning. Cook for a couple of minutes to soften slightly, then add the leaves and toss until wilted – about 30 seconds. Season again if needed.

Smear the yoghurt over the bottom of plates or bowls and top with the chickpeas and lamb, the sautéed greens and the tomatoes.

(Original recipe from Dining In by Alison Roman, Clarkson Potter, 2017.)

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Who would have thought that something so delicious could be made from chard? The stalky bits, that you might have been tempted to throw away, are the stars of the show!

Chard leaves with wild garlic & olive oil – to serve 2

  • leaves cut from a 500g bunch of chard (save the stalks for the recipe below)
  • 150g wild garlic, remove any thick stalks (if it’s not wild garlic time you can substitute a clove of garlic instead)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Slice the chard and wild garlic into wide ribbons. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and add the leaves and seasoning. Gently fry until beginning to wilt and then stew for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Serve hot.

Chard gratin – to serve 2 

  • 30g butter
  • 20g plain flour
  • 225ml milk
  • 30g Gruyère cheese, grated
  • 40g Parmesan, grated
  • salt, freshly ground white pepper and nutmeg
  • chard stalks from a 500g bunch

Preheat the oven to 200ºC/Gas 6.

Make a mornay sauce by melting the butter in a saucepan and stirring in the flour. Cook gently for a few minutes, then pour in the milk and whisk. Put the pan over a low heat and stir continuously until the sauce starts to thicken (don’t worry if goes lumpy just keep stirring and the lumps will eventually dissolve).

Add the Gruyère, 25g of the Parmesan and the seasonings. Simmer very gently, stirring now and then, for about 15-20 minutes.

Meanwhile, peel the chard stalks with a veg peeler and cut into 8-10cm lengths. Steam or boil for about 20 minutes, or until tender, then remove and lay on a clean tea towel to dry.

Lightly butter a gratin dish and lay the chard stalks in it. Pour over the sauce and sprinkle with the rest of the Parmesan. Bake for about 20 minutes , or until golden and bubbling.

Serve with the chard leaves.

(Original recipe from Simon Hopkinson’s The Vegetarian Option, Quadrille, 2009.)

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