March Greens – Chard Pesto

When I originally drafted my March Greens blog topics, chard did not make the cut.  However, after a recent episode of Parks and Recreation called “Farmers Market”, I was forced to reconsider;  the topic of chard in Pawnee made me laugh out loud.  Warning – if you have recent episodes of P&R on your DVR, this will contain some comedic spoilers…  Here are the top 3 quips about chard direct from the world of Leslie Knope:

  1. “Mmmmmm…  Chard is so bitter!”
  2. “And for all you freaky vegans out there – we got chard shots!”
  3. “Chard is disgusting. You try selling it without sexy dancers. It’s impossible! It’s like:  Hey! You like lettuce? Try this, it’s worse. It tastes like kale took a dump on spinach.”

parks-and-recreation-chard

(source with hilarious video clip)

Chard may be an acquired taste for residents of a town whose favorite local business is Sweetums Candy and who often enjoy 512 oz. sodas from local fast food chain restaurant, Paunch Burger.  But I think it’s quite good!  I actually started eating chard before I learned to love kale – it was my “gateway green.”  Don’t dismiss chard after the put downs on Parks and Rec;  it has several nutritional benefits, such as being extremely high in vitamin K that helps support healthy and strong bones.  One easy way to sneak chard into your meal is to chop some up and mix into your red sauce for a pasta dish.  Or you can try this recipe that utilizes chard to put a healthy twist on the traditional pesto sauce.

Chard Pesto

image(13)

Ingredients / Nutrition Information:

  • 1.5 cups of chopped raw chard
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp shredded Parmesan
  • .25 cups of almonds

image(12)

Directions:

  1. Chop chard into bite size pieces, removing the thick stem in the middle of the leaf
  2. Wash the chopped chard by dunking it in cold water
  3. Dry either with a towel pat down or salad spinner
  4. Place half the chard into your food processor, then add all the other ingredients and finally the rest of the chard
  5. Chop ingredients in food processor until texture is consistent
  6. Scoop out pesto from food processor and add to whatever dish you are serving – tonight I served the pesto atop baked salmon.

Variations:

  • This goes great with whole wheat pasta!  This is a favorite pre-race meal for me.
  • You can swap the Chard for any other green you like:  basil, spinach, kale…
  • You can also swap the almonds for another nut.  I like walnuts or local Oregon hazelnuts.

Questions for you: What do you put in your pesto?  Post a comment to let me know and you can be a guest blogger!

Cheers³

Reni

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “March Greens – Chard Pesto

  1. Pingback: Travel Blender – Kitchen Gadgets in November | Cheers³

  2. Pingback: March Greens – Argula and Goat Cheese Chicken Pesto Pizza | Cheers³

  3. I don’t know if I have had chard but like kale. There is a salad at Costco that has kale and brussel spouts in it that I really like. Looks like I could make this easily though at home.

    I don’t make pesto so I can’t give any suggestions that way.

    Like

    • If you have a food processor, it is super easy to make pesto at home. I like that I can make it a little less oily than the pre-made pesto at the grocery store and it’s fun to mix and match ingredients. Let me know if you give it a whirl 🙂

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s