Expandable Side Dish: Kale & Chard with Tomato and Garlic

Like I said a week or so ago, I'm trying harder with the cooked veg.  This recipe showed up in the January Everyday Food magazine and I knew at once I'd have to try it.  I've been trying for a while to get D. to eat kale.  He'll eat Swiss chard and other greens, and enjoys kale in soups (um, with sausage, and really who can blame him?), but he's not a fan of kale for kale's sake. I, on the other hand, can't get enough of the stuff.  An aside:  If you're like me, you might wanna check out this clever site - I proudly sport one of his t-shirts.

I digress.  I've altered this recipe to include chard - mostly because I had a bunch of it that needed eating and also because this was going to be our only veg with a roast chicken.  The greens here are soft and tender and the tomatoes create this syrupy, garlicky sauce that is so delicious - it tastes like it has a lot more oil in it than it does. It received one thumb up from D., which, if you know D., is a very big deal.

Kale & Chard with Tomato and Garlic (adapted from Everyday Food Magazine)

1 bunch lacinato kale (AKA dinosaur kale or Tuscan kale - and you can use regular old kale if that's what you want to do), tough stems removed and roughly chopped
1 bunch Swiss chard, tough stems removed and roughly chopped
2-4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped (I used 4, but we love garlic)
2 c. cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 T. extra virgin olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.  Cook the kale and chard until tender, about 4 minutes. Drain well and set aside.

In a large skillet (or that same pot you boiled the greens in, wiped out), heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.  Add the tomatoes and cook until they start to break down, 2-3 minutes.  Add the greens and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Serves 4 (or two people who love veg and aren't eating starch).

Why is this expandable? If you toss this with 12-16 oz. of your favorite pasta, you'll have a nice meal. If you choose whole wheat pasta, you'll get an extra dose of fiber and protein to go along with it . . . or you could, of course, serve this with Italian sausages alongside (or oooh - cut up and mixed in with the greens!).  The saucy tomatoes will coat your pasta and the colors will be gorgeous.

Image: Carlos Porto / FreeDigitalPhotos.net