Swiss chard has a rich, earthy, slightly bitter taste that pairs well with a variety of other bold flavors including smoky bacon, spicy chilies, pungent garlic, sweet raisins and salty cheeses. Splash the chard with a touch of your favorite vinegar just before serving. Serves 4.
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 slices bacon, cut into 1/2″ wide strips
2 small cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
2 pounds Swiss chard, washed
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Sherry vinegar
- Cut the leaves from the center ribs and stems of the chard. Slice the ribs and stems crosswise into 2″ pieces. Stack the chard leaves and roll them up into cylinders. Cut the cylinders crosswise into 1” lengths.
- Heat the oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook until the fat begins to render (melt). Add the garlic and cook, stirring for a minute or two until just fragrant, but not burnt. Add the chard ribs and stems, salt and pepper and cook, covered, stirring once or twice until barely tender, about 8 minutes. Add the chard leaves and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until the ribs and stems are tender and the leaves are wilted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a platter, drizzle with vinegar and serve.
Tip for Preparing Swiss Chard: We recommend separating the ribs and stems of the chard from the leaves because they take up to three times longer to cook.
Swiss Chard with Bacon and Goat Cheese: Sprinkle the chard with 1/2 cup of crumbled goat cheese just before serving.