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Potato, Pepper, and Greens Frittata, Insalata Caprese, and How I Learned to Like Swiss Chard

October 16, 2009

Hopie’s back with a follow-up to her panier plans.  I like Swiss chard to begin with, but her dish sounds like something I should try anyway!

This has been a good week for the panier. Knowing that I’d shared my plans made me much more diligent about using my ingredients well. I did opt for the frittata to take the bitter edge off the frizzy greens and it worked great! I also got to add in all sorts of bits and ends that I had in the fridge, which is the great thing about frittata. I sautéed onions, an orange pepper, the greens and potatoes in olive oil until they were soft, then added them in a salad bowl to 5 eggs, some feta and parmesan cheese, a chopped fresh tomato, fresh thyme and ground pepper. Then I baked it until it set (about 25 min). Tea from the blog Tea & Cookies calls this dish Clean Out the Fridge Frittata because you just put in whatever you have. Mine doesn’t look anything like hers, but I like that idea.


As I suspected, I ate most of my tomatoes in caprese salad with garlic bread.  I had some soft fresh mozzarella and some basil still on the window sill, so I couldn’t resist.

Caprese and Garlic Bread

And, happily, I finally got my Potatoes au Gratin with Smoked Salmon, in which the potatoes are boiled, then put into a baking dish and layered alternately with a mix of Boursin and crème fraîche, and smoked salmon (you can see why I was lobbying). The whole thing goes in the oven until it’s sinfully melty and good.

Gratin Delphinois

The Swiss chard, however, was the best thing about this week. Aha, you don’t believe me because I already told you I don’t like Swiss chard, but I’ve changed my mind, and if you’re anything like me, you will too. I sautéed a small onion and yellow mustard seeds in olive oil (covered because the seeds pop) and in the meantime tossed the Swiss chard in cumin, turmeric, curry leaves, grated coconut, salt and cayenne pepper. I added them to the onions with a small chopped tomato, and cooked until the chard was good and wilted. Then I eagerly ate a big plate of it. (To be fair, I imagine if you cooked just about anything in those spices it would taste good.)

Indian Swiss Chard

Thanks to Camille for inviting me over and happy seasonal cooking!

Originally written and photographed by Hopie, published on Seasonal Market Menus.

  1. October 21, 2009 10:16 pm

    I’m not really a huge fan of Swiss chard but you’ve convinced me to give it another shot, the potatoes sound amazing I’ve got to give that recipe a go!

  2. October 22, 2009 11:56 pm

    Sam – The potatoes are super yummy. I bet if you like Indian spices, you’ll be convinced by the Swiss chard! You’ll have to let me know if you experiment 🙂

  3. Nini permalink
    October 25, 2009 8:54 am

    Ah, Hopie, your chard recipe sounds delicious — like all your other recipes! I like even plain steamed chard (especially with a little lemon juice squeezed on it!) and it was your parents who introduced me to chard when you were knee-high to a toadstool (well, maybe an exceptionally tall morel). As you know, you have great cooking genes on both sides of your family and here is the ultimate proof: on a harried night when your dad was cooking dinner (probably during the period when our house’s phone number was one digit different from the Department of Fish and Wildlife and the phone kept ringing off the hook due to hunters seeking licenses and information — perhaps I hallucinate but I seem to remember that in a moment of apparent terminal exasperation I overheard your father growl into the phone: “NO! This is Mr. Fish and Mr. Wildlife is out!” and slam the phone down . Anyway, you get the idea). I digress. Chard was on the menu that night — whether steamed or braised, I can’t recall — but, very uncharacteristically, your dad “lost track” of it and soon there was no liquid at all in the pot and an aroma of blackened substances spread through the house. He had charred the chard. It actually was black and a bit flakey. Jokingly, all four adults took a small taste. And this was the spooky part: it was delicious. We ate the Charred Chard in an awed silence due to your dad’s truly bizarre culinary prowess — and, possibly, extraordinary power of prayer. I am grateful that you have inherited both these valuable gifts, my dear Hopie, and look forward with great delight and anticipation to every entry on your enchanting and mouth-watering blog. Love, Nini

  4. October 31, 2009 12:15 pm

    Aw thank you Nini! What a great story – funnily dad never mentioned charring the chard 😉 I remember when we lived in Hyde Park, he did ritually burn bacon every Sunday (he used to say that bacon never cooked while you were watching it and burnt as soon as you turned your back), which made me very happy because I was the only one who would eat bacon that was burned black and I got a whole batch of it to myself!

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