Thursday, 4 August 2011

Rainbow Chard with Chickpeas and Chorizo

After consuming vast amounts of schweinfleisch and bier on my recent trip to Germany I decided it was time to hit the veg again and get some vitamins and fibre back on the menu.

This beautiful, bright rainbow chard is from Peterley Farm, a fantastic PYO just down the road from me.  I'm not sure why you don't see more of this stuff in the supermarket.  It doesn't seem to be quite as watery or 'shrink' as much as spinach when you cook it and has a lovely earthy, slightly bitter flavour.  Of course you can use spinach, kale or any other leafy greens instead.

The trick to this dish is to balance the flavours; the creaminess of beans, the bitterness of the greens and a salty element provided by the meat (for a veggie version sprinkle some feta or goats cheese over after cooking).  A good squeeze of lemon or sherry vinegar and some decent olive oil added at the end help lift things. I usually eat this warm, with just some crusty bread and maybe glass or two of vino, but it also makes a nice accompaniment for chicken or pork.

Rainbow Chard with Chickpeas and Chorizo
Serves 2

2 Cloves of garlic
Large bunch of rainbow chard, chopped roughly
Tin of chickpeas
100g Semi-cured chorizo sausage, (or smoked bacon) diced
Pinch of chilli flakes
Juice of 1/2 lemon (or a couple of splashes of sherry vinegar)
Olive oil

Gently fry the garlic and chorizo in a little olive oil. (I use a wok) 
Add the chard and cook for 4 or 5 minutes until tender.
Add drained chickpeas, chilli flakes and lemon juice and heat through.
Season to taste and add a squeeze more lemon juice and a glug of oil before serving

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