Thursday, November 24, 2016


Vintage cornucopia found: here
Stand up and take chard of your holiday appetizer tray with this recipe for Boatyard Chard.  Move over Spinach Dip, there's a new spread in the slip!  The warm flavors of ginger root, and garlic bring a cozy heat to this otherwise mellow starter.

Here's what you need:
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 1-2 Inch Piece of Ginger Root (grated) 
  • 1 Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/4 Cup of Water
  • 1-2 Bunches Swiss Chard (sliced into 1/4 - 1/2" pieces be sure to use some stems too!)
  • 2 Cups Ricotta Cheese

Here's what you do:
Heat oil in a medium sized pot over medium heat.  Add garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes, and cook for 4-6 minutes (just long enough to get fragrant, don't burn it!).  Add chard, and water, cover and cook until wilted and tender - another 4-8 minutes.  Season with salt.

*HINT* If you're going salt free, however, use more diced chard stems in your recipe, they give a great salty flavoring to your dish.  The stems also contain glutamine (amino acid) that aids in tissue recovery in the body, so they're great to have around after injury or surgery!

Once your greens are nice and wilted, combine them with two cups of ricotta cheese in a baking dish, and pop into your pre-heated oven you set to 425° and bake for 12 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.  Serve with crostini or crackers of your choice, it's perfect straight out of the oven, or chilled overnight!

I stumbled upon this flavorful, yet gentle recipe when I altered, and combined one of my favorites (coconut chard) with the directions for a dip recipe that involved ricotta cheese, at a time when I had to engage in a brutally restrictive diet.  My body wasn't playing nicely with all of the other foods on the playground, or maybe it was the other way around, but this was one recipe that was a bit of a peace-maker, especially through the holiday season.  So, I thought I would share it this year for anyone dealing with food allergies, or mega-restrictions, or even weight loss, and diets that are leaving you with rather less-than-palatable options these days, because nobody wants to be unable to eat, and enjoy family gatherings, forever banished to loser-table ... it's a lot like the kids' table, but with no crayons.