Friday, January 9, 2015

Rainbow Chard with Indian Flavors

In my quest to eat more green leafy vegetables, I've been experimenting with flavors to go beyond the usual steamed or sautéed versions. Last night I decided to make Rainbow Chard and use Indian flavors to give it some pizazz.  It worked!  It was a delicious combination of flavors. I used garlic, onion and ginger as the main flavor components along with Cumin and Coriander.  I also added some Tomatoes to help make the sauce.  The Rainbow Chard was cooked in the sauce and it ended up being a big hit on the dinner table.  It was easy and fast and will definitely become a ongoing way to cook Chard.

Rainbow Chard with Indian Flavors

2 bunches Rainbow Chard cut into small pieces (about 4 cups), stems and leaves separated
3 Tablespoons Ghee
1 medium Onion, chopped
2 cloves of Garlic, minced
2" piece of Ginger, grated
1 small Serrano Chili, seeds removed and diced
1 teaspoon ground Coriander
1 teaspoon ground Cumin
3 - 4 Tomatoes diced (nearly 2 cups)
1 teaspoon Salt

Melt Ghee in a large frying pan and add onion.  Cook until it begins to brown. Then add in Garlic and Ginger and the Spices.  Cook until the Spices darken (this happens quickly.)  Then add in the Tomatoes and the Serrano Chili.  Cook on medium heat until the tomatoes start to break down and become a thick sauce. Add in the Chard stems and cook for 5 - 6 minutes, stirring occasionally until almost tender. Add in the stems and stir until the wilt.  Sprinkle with salt and serve warm.

Five Element Analysis

Chard is considered a leafy green and a very healthy one too.  It is full of vitamins and minerals and is very good for the liver. The ancient Chinese considered it a good vegetable for the skin.  It is considered a Wood food so that element is covered.  The Ghee, Onions and Garlic contribute the Metal Element as do the Spices.  The Serrano Chili and Tomatoes bring in the Fire Element and the Ginger contributes the Earth Element and there is a slight bitterness to Chard that makes it a bit Fiery too. Only the Water Element is missing so this would be a good side dish to a Water food like Eggplant or Fish to make a balanced meal.  

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