Homemade: Swiss Chard and Curly Kale from Whitton Farms

Three weeks ago, I started my fourth CSA from Whitton Farms. At this point, a CSA share is part of my life rhythm, and I look forward to my weekly grab-bag of produce the way kids do to Christmas gifts.

In addition to my fondness for Jill and Keith Forrester and the Whitton Farm crew, a CSA has taught me how to cook the old-fashion way, following availability and whim more than recipes. My insistence on using every piece of produce every week (no carryovers!) also has brought out my frugal side, which frankly, my husband never thought he would see.

I also try to cook with all vegetable parts, and my current favorites are radish tops. They have a wonderful peppery taste, and their short-lived availability turns them into a seasonal treat. I toss chopped radish tops into green salads, egg salad, and tuna fish. Last night, I added a generous amount to sauteed greens, and I loved the depth they added to the flavor. Here‘s my recipe, if you want to give it a try.

A bunch of Swiss chard
A bunch of curly kale
Radish tops, chopped
Spring onions, chopped
Chopped garlic
Cherry tomatoes, halved
Four slices bacon
Olive oil, one or two tablespoons
Red wine vinegar, about a quarter of a cup
Fresh squeezed juice from one lemon

Clean and chop kale, removing stems; clean and chop chard, including steams; clean and chop radish tops. Toss together and set aside.

Chop onions and garlic; half cherry tomatoes. Set aside.

Fry bacon in cast iron skillet. Set aside and crumble when cool. Pour off bacon grease, leaving just enough to coat pan. Add a little olive oil and heat pan.

Toss in onions and garlic. When the onions start to get soft, add about a quarter of cup of chicken stock. Cook down until the onions, garlic, and stock turn into a paste and then add a little more stock

Add greens and radish tops and cook until tender. Season with a little kosher salt and pepper. Add vinegar to taste. In the last minute or two of cooking, add tomatoes. Take off heat and season with lemon juice. Garnish with crumbled bacon.


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