In Season: Swiss Chard


[Photo: ulterior epicure on Flickr]

While they're a close cousin of magenta-hued beets, the vibrant green leaves of Swiss chard get all the glory above ground.

Known as chard, Swiss chard, and spinach beet, they're great in salads when young and sauteed when more mature and bitter. They've been called a "vegetable valedictorian" for the profusion of vitamins and health benefits they contains (plenty of Vitamin K, A, C, among others), but it's worth eating just for its flavor and crisp texture. Fun fact: these greens are not actually Swiss—the scientist who first named them, however, was.

When buying Swiss chard, look for vibrant green leaves without browning. Avoid limp, blemished leaves and wilted stems. You can use them in any of the recipes below, or substitute chard for kale or spinach in other recipes.

Swiss Chard Recipes

What's your favorite way to eat Swiss chard?