Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Swiss Chard with Linguine

We always try to menu plan based on our perishables. What is in the fridge and what is the estimated time for freshness... i.e when will stuff start to rot. Our swiss chard wasn't yet on the endangered list but it was getting close so naturally I headed to Smitten Kitchen and found this recipe. It's not that I am averse to cookbooks, it is just that I feel like they are not really well suited for today's busy life. When I am at work, writing three emails, answering calls, and shouting questions and replies back to my colleagues (our offices are kind of like stables... you can walk by and see what people are doing but communication is frustrating and it is often easier to call a colleague 2 feet away than it is to get up and walk 10 feet straight and 2 feet left to see her) it is so much easier to do a quick internet search and come up with the menu plan, identifying any missing ingredients to pick up on the way home.

When I sent this recipe to Nick, he was skeptical. It didn't look terribly exciting and nothing is worse than a boring dish of pasta. I adore swiss chard though and was in the mood for something hearty after "The blizzard of 2010". I persisted. All we need to pick up is feta. It will be easy. HA!

Poor Nick. When I arrived home 2 hours later, he had managed to de-sand all of the swiss chard and was about to start on the garlic chips but folks in the words of the handsome chef "this is not a schoolnight meal". If you are going to try it, please do so on a weekend, perhaps even prepping the chard mix and olives ahead of time. Swiss chard can be very sandy and is one of the more complicated greens to prepare because of the thick stalk.
That said, this was DELICIOUS. By far one of the best pasta dishes we have ever eaten at home. I know what you are thinking. Linguine...really? Is there even any sauce? I promise: you will NOT be disappointed. I can't even describe the rich and full taste of the garlic chips, paired with the heartiness of greens and feta. Granted we made a few adjustments to the recipe (black olives instead of kalamata because they were already in our pantry, less water, a touch of olive oil, no currants... etc.) but seriously, MAKE this. Soon. This is a dish I would proudly serve to company again and again. Thanks to the chef on this one, as I merely provided the feta! xN

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