Dinner Tonight: Pasta with Sauteed Swiss Chard, Golden Raisins, and Capers

[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger]

My wife swears she's sent me this recipe numerous times before, but I never gave it much thought until I personally found it on the The Daily Green and sent it to her excitedly, like it was the greatest thing ever. I was inspired by the odd culinary pairing of golden raisins and capers, and hoped they would balance each other and bring out the Swiss chard flavors.

But what really sold it for me was the fact that this could be, in the words of the author, a "delicious pasta partner." Considering the size of the chopped chard, I figured farfalle would be that perfect partner, and I'm pretty sure I was right. This was a warming and balanced plate of pasta.

I upped the ante with a little more olive oil and generous gratings of Parmesan. The result is truly satisfying. The briny capers enliven the dish while the sugary raisins help provide some kind of stability.

Dinner Tonight: Pasta with Sauteed Swiss Chard, Golden Raisins, and Capers

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About This Recipe

Yield:2 to 3

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound farfalle
  • 1 pound Swiss chard (red or rainbow)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons golden raisins
  • 1 tablespoon drained capers
  • Salt and pepper
  • Grated Parmesan cheese

Procedures

  1. 1

    Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, separate the stems of the Swiss chard from the leaves. Chop the stems into 1-inch pieces. Slice the leaves into 2-inch pieces.

  2. 2

    Pour the olive oil into a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the onion, and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add the Swiss chard stems, cover, and cook for 5 minutes or so, stirring every minute.

  3. 3

    Toss in the raisins, then add a handful of the chard leaves. Stir well, and then cover the pot. Once they have wilted, add another handful, cover, and wait until those have wilted. Repeat until all the chard leaves are added. Cook for 7 to 10 minutes, or until the leaves have wilted and the stems are tender. Turn off the heat and add the capers. Stir until well combined.

  4. 4

    Meanwhile, add a couple tablespoons of salt to the pot of boiling water and cook the pasta according to the directions on the box. Drain and set aside when done.

  5. 5

    Combine the pasta and Swiss chard mixture in a large bowl. Toss well. Grate some Parmesan cheese on top and drizzle with a bit more olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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