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This week's healthiest food - Swiss Chard

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Old 07-14-2008, 09:20 AM   #1
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Default This week's healthiest food - Swiss Chard

I love greens but this is not one I've tried. I've been meaning to try it though
http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=16

Food of the Week . . . Swiss Chard
Did you know that Swiss chard promotes healthy bones and vision? It is a very good non-dairy source of calcium and an excellent source of vitamin K, which plays an important role in maintaining bone health since it activates osteocalcin, the major non-collagen protein in bone. Swiss chard's rich supply of magnesium is also necessary for healthy bones. About two-thirds of the magnesium in the human body is found in our bones. Some helps give bones their physical structure, while the rest is found on the surface of the bone where it is stored for the body to draw upon as needed. Swiss chard is also an excellent source of vitamin A and is rich in beta-carotene, two important nutrients for healthy vision. In a study of over 50,000 women, those who consumed the highest dietary amount of vitamin A had a 39% reduced risk of developing cataracts. Chard is also rich in the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, two powerful antioxidants that concentrate in the ! lens and retina to protect them from oxidative damage. Dietary intake of these carotenoids has been found to reduce risk of developing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration
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Old 07-14-2008, 09:37 AM   #2
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Same here Nelie. I've never tried it, but have been meaning to.

I'd love to hear what some of the folks around here who do eat it, do with it. I haven't a clue.
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Old 07-14-2008, 09:46 AM   #3
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It's very "earthy" in flavor. It's one of the "hearty" greens that I actually *do* like sliced very thin for a raw salad.

Here's a favorite way to eat it:

Served sautéed with caramelized onions, garlic, red pepper flakes and a squeeze of lemon over a nicely seasoned sun dried tomato polenta with a few pinches of salt and pepper.
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Old 07-14-2008, 12:25 PM   #4
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I discovered it last week. I mentioned in another thread that it holds up to cooking really well. Also, don't toss out those stems when cooking with it. They are sort of between an onion and celery when cooked. It gives whatever dish you're making a nice crunch, kind of like bok choy. I also like how the leaves hold up to cooking. It's not as mushy as spinach and not as tough as kale.

I haven't tried it raw, simply because I use so many different greens in my salads.

I've made roasts- swiss chard, beets, red onion, baby potatoes garlic, and vinaigrette
and "italian" stir-frys- swiss chard, mushrooms, garlic, petite diced tomatoes, onion, etc..
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Old 07-14-2008, 12:27 PM   #5
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Yeah, I eat the stems too (with kale and collards also). I don't get why people throw them out! Then again, I buy organic and use every precious bit I can.
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Old 07-14-2008, 11:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoulBliss View Post
It's very "earthy" in flavor. It's one of the "hearty" greens that I actually *do* like sliced very thin for a raw salad.

Here's a favorite way to eat it:

Served sautéed with caramelized onions, garlic, red pepper flakes and a squeeze of lemon over a nicely seasoned sun dried tomato polenta with a few pinches of salt and pepper.
YUM! This sounds fantastic!

My favorite way (thus far) is to slice the whole leaf and stem into about 1 inch ribbons, saute an onion add the Swiss Chard and couple of tomatoes cubed. You could add any number of flavors to that basic mix (garlic, tamari, vinegar, Italian spices, sesame oil and sesame seeds, hot chilis, etc to change it up) I eat it as a side dish.
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Old 07-15-2008, 03:31 AM   #7
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We eat swiss chard a lot. My SO doesn't like spinach but he does like swiss chard so I use it in any recipe that calls for spinach. It's really great in egg dishes.

I grow it in my garden and I like to eat the young leaves raw. I just toss them in with the lettuce in my nightly salad. They add a lot of depth to the salad and hold up well. Sometimes I eat so many of the young chard leaves that we never get any full-sized ones.

I posted several of my favorite chard recipes in the recipes section of the maintainers' forum.
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Old 07-15-2008, 05:01 PM   #8
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I've never tried it either. I'm not a fan of greens, so I doubt I'd like it, although I'll try anything once, within reason.
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Old 07-15-2008, 08:39 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I've never tried it either. I'm not a fan of greens, so I doubt I'd like it, although I'll try anything once, within reason.
You never know, you might like it. My SO is not a fan of greens either. Spinach, collard greens, mustard greens--they're all pretty much out of the question. But he does like swiss chard, he'll even eat it raw in salads or cooked by itself, rather than disguised in something else.
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Old 07-15-2008, 09:04 PM   #10
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Mmmmm. We grow it every summer. Nice thing about it is that it keeps on growing. I am one who doesn't like the stems though. I cut them out. I use it cooked, raw, in soups, any place you'd use spinach.

One of my favorite ways to have it - though not especially low calorie - is to have it "creamed" - with lots of onion and garlic in a white sauce. My DH likes it steamed and served with vinegar on it.
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Old 07-15-2008, 09:12 PM   #11
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You can buy bunches of rainbow chard which mixes chard colors together. It can really liven up the appearance of a stir fry and make it more visually appealing. Because I find the flavor a little stronger than the mild greens (e.g. bok choy), I use it more as an accent.
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Old 07-16-2008, 03:09 PM   #12
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We had chard for dinner just last night, steamed with some sun dried tomatoes and "creamed" with some tahini dressing right before serving. Yum! There are so many greens in season that I can get at the farmers market right now, including my favorite - beets! It's just heaven.
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Old 07-16-2008, 03:58 PM   #13
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Like WaterRat's DH, I eat it steamed with a splash of balsamic vinegar. I love Swiss chard (leaves and stems) and haven't been able to get it to grow for some reason. But at least the Farmer's Market always has some.

I'll have to try some of the recipes.
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Old 07-16-2008, 07:37 PM   #14
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Like Blue I toss it in soups, and sub for spinach. I saute (in cooking spray or a hint of olive oil) some mushrooms and garlic, add a big mess of chard with the water clinging from washing, cover till done and toss with whole wheat high fiber pasta, a breath of parmesan, and some cottage cheese or Laughing Cow. It just keeps coming back in my vegetable garden- so I feel lucky that I enjoy it.
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Old 07-16-2008, 08:32 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueToBlue View Post
You never know, you might like it. My SO is not a fan of greens either. Spinach, collard greens, mustard greens--they're all pretty much out of the question. But he does like swiss chard, he'll even eat it raw in salads or cooked by itself, rather than disguised in something else.
I'd be willing to try it, but I don't think I've ever seen it in the store. Maybe that's because I never looked for it. I might do that the next time I go shopping.
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