Greg and I were driving in West Kelowna BC Canada looking for a place to walk. We drove by the lovely BONFIRE Culinary Farm Market and stopped to see what they had for sale. I was craving something green and saw Swiss Chard still in the field. Lisa was welcoming and offered to pick a bunch for us.
Fresh field tomatoes also caught my eye. Nothing better than a fresh tomato sandwich on toasted sourdough bread!
Pasta with Chard and Garlic
1 pound Swiss chard, stems cut from the leaves and the stems and leaves chopped separately
1/8 teaspoon dried hot red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 white onion sliced into slivers
3 large garlic cloves sliced thin, Russian Garlic is terrific
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup water or broth, Better Than Bouillon is my favorite
1 1/2 cups red cherry tomatoes
1/2 pound penne or other tubular pasta
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan plus more for topping
Rinse and drain separately the Swiss chard stems and leaves.
In a large heavy skillet cook the red pepper flakes and the garlic and onion in the oil over moderate heat, stirring, until the garlic is pale golden, add the stems and 1/4 cup of the water, and cook the mixture, covered, for 5 minutes, or until the stems are just tender.
Add the leaves with the remaining 1/4 cup water and salt and pepper to taste and cook the mixture, covered, for 5 minutes. Stir in the cherry tomatoes and cook the mixture, covered, for 3 minutes, or until the leaves are tender.
While the chard is cooking, in a kettle of salted boiling water boil the penne until it is al dente and drain it in a colander. In a large bowl toss the penne with the chard mixture and 1/4 cup of the Parmesan,
In heavy skillet toss in cherry tomatoes and sear till they almost pop. Toss on top of the Penne Chard.
Serve it with the additional Parmesan. If desired.
Tip: To chop the Swiss Chard after washing, roll the leaves into a tube and then slice. They come out nice and evenly sliced.
Substitute canned cherry tomatoes for fresh and use the juice from the can for the water or broth.
Optional : Add 2-3 links cooked and sliced Italian Sausage