Last week a series of unfortunate circumstances came together and culminated in my having to shop at Whole Foods. With the exception of late-night vegan dessert runs, I haven’t tried to buy food there in a few years. Duck and I, having almost maxed out on kale (I know, I didn’t think it was possible either!) were craving this yummy chard and walnut dish his mom made for us a few weeks ago, so my assignment was to run into Whole Foods and pick up some chard and some walnuts. But when I got to the produce section, everything arrayed before me in the rustic wooden bins under the special full-spectrum lights, all the fruits and veggies shining and winking like a treasure box of jewels, I saw that the chard was $1.99 a bunch, and that a bunch consisted of a measly five small stalks.
Now five stalks of chard is an extremely conservative single serving for such leafy-green lovers as Duck and myself. So I was looking at $4 of chard, minimum, just for one dinner. I perused the greens section and found that the mustard greens had been bundled a bit more generously, so I decided we’d have mustard greens with lime and garlic, and the chard-walnut experience would just have to wait for a friendlier shopping opportunity.
When a huge, lovely bunch of swiss chard arrived in this week’s box, I jumped for joy and ran out to the corner health-food store to get walnuts. Washing and drying the leaves, I couldn’t help counting them and musing that this was about $6 worth of produce by Whole Foods standards. Dinner ended up being a little series of yummy bites – some of Duck’s mom’s chard and walnut dish, a simple relish made with the chard stalks and a red onion, sauteed with some of the balsamic dressing from the chard, non-box sweet potato fries (orange and white – the white were new to me and so good!), and a Tangelo-Ginger-Green Garlic sauce from a box newsletter, dressing up some Forbidden black rice.
Duck’s Mom’s Chard and Walnut Yum
This recipe is direct from the duck’s mom’s mouth!
I recommend making the dressing in a larger quantity and having it on hand for salads too, so you will have to gauge how much you dress the chard.
Chop and then steam the chard. Put the walnuts in the oven at 350 and try not to burn them, that is it the trick. One minute they are cooking….
2/3 cup good oil
1/3 balsamic vinegar
1 clove of garlic pressed
1 tsp salt
TBS of liquid mustard if you want (I didn’t use it)
Toss the chard walnuts and a couple spoonfuls of dressing and then see if you need more.