Swiss chard with raisins and pine nuts

Another market begins. Dr. Moses Elam, the new Physician-in-Chief, and other leaders at the Stockton Medical Center are excited about the grand opening of their farmers' market on Tuesday May 3rd. Located close to the growers, they will feature a wide variety of organic fruits and vegetables. Their market, more than many others, exemplifies the concept of buying locally grown food. As our Oakland market expands its offerings, I am noticing an increase in the number of shoppers. Just as medicine's language describes conditions with terms such as psoriatic and non-psoriatic arthropathy, John Silveira and Allen Moy of the Pacific Coast Farmers' Market Association describe crops as sugar and non-sugar varieties. We are definitely moving into the sugar crop season. Cherries will arrive this week or next, the strawberries are big and sweet, nectarines are getting bigger on the trees and here I am ascribing the greater number of shoppers to the weather and wider variety of vegetables. This week’s recipe is a healthy blend of non-sugar and sugar crop items. Pick up different colors of chard at Happy Boys Farm and an onion. Buy some raisins from Lone Oak Ranch. Use either their sliced almonds or buy some pine nuts. This is the first chard recipe I have shared. It won't be the last.

Ingredients

  • 2 bunches Swiss chard
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts (almonds or sunflower seeds, etc)
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup raisins, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions

Tear or cut the chard leaves from the main stems after rinsing them. Coarsely chop the leaves and stems separately. In a large, heavy pot and a bit of oil, toast the nuts for just a couple of minutes until golden brown. Remove the nuts with a slotted spoon. Cook the onion in the oil for a minute, then add the stems and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add raisins and 2 Tbsp of water. Cover and cook until the stems start to become tender. Add the leaves and remaining 2 Tbsp water. Cover and cook until the leaves are tender, about 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with nuts.

Contributor

Preston Maring, MD

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