Saturday, July 2, 2011

CSAs and Chard Fatigue: Franks, Beans & Greens


While many of you around the country are enjoying early Summer produce, we Chicagoans are still seeing Spring's greens in our CSA box, lots and lots of greens.

With a little oil, salt, and a warm oven, I can transform the kale into crispy little bites. Chard, on the other hand, has begun to outlive its utility. Unlike its fairer cousin spinach, I don't like to freeze excess chard. To me, it only intensifies the bitterness.

Instead, I've been tucking the Alpine green in stews, both meatless and meaty. Last week's creation was so well received at my family's table that I reprised it again this week. If you too have an excess of the red tinged green, try this family favorite.

Franks, Beans and Greens

Serves 4

1 onion, diced
1/2 garlic scape, sliced
1 tablespoon sunflower oil
1/4 cup white wine
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/4 cup ketchup
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon Worcestire sauce
Pinches of cloves and cinnamon
1 12 ounce kielbasa, sliced
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 small bunch Swiss chard, rinsed, stemmed and roughly chopped

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and scapes and cook until the onions are caramelized about 7 or so minutes. Pour in white wine and cook until reduced. Add sugar, maple syrup, ketchup, mustard, Worcestire sauce, cloves and cinnamon. Turn off the heat. Brown the kielbasa in a large skillet over high heat. Add the kielbasa, beans and chard to the saucepan. Cover and cook until the chard is wilted and the ingredients are hot. Serve.

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