Wednesday, 23 July 2008

Swiss Chard with Chickpeas and Feta

This is not a particularly photogenic dish (especially not when it's been papped at my desk during a muggy midweek lunchtime) but it is absolutely one of those recipes where the simplicity and brevity of the list of ingredients belie the complexity and richness of the flavours. I'm always interested in finding great ways to use the more unusual leafy greens (chard, kale, cavolo nero etc) and in my mind, this sits well on its own as a main dish, but can also be served on the side for those who prefer a more substantial main course. I got the original recipe from Abel & Cole (whose boxes I was a huge fan of until I moved to Portobello Road where I could buy my veggies literally outside my front door) but I can't find it on their site now.

Swiss Chard with Chickpeas and Feta
1 bunch Swiss Chard
1 cup chickpeas (soaked overnight and boiled for an hour)
2 cloves garlic
olive oil
3 spring onions
chopped fresh dill
feta cheese

Rinse the chard, chop it roughly and transfer it still wet to a frying pan. Add a splash more water and sautee it in a mix of olive oil and water, along with the garlic cloves, until the leaves soften and reduce. I don't like to overcook mine so usually only take 5 mins or so. Thinly slice the spring onions and add them to the frying pan, along with the chickpeas and chopped dill. Combine the ingredients well and transfer to an oven proof dish. Season with salt and pepper before baking for 20 minutes. Add a scattering of chopped feta cheese to the dish and grill for a final 5 to 10 minutes or until the feta begins to brown.

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