Please don’t tell me you’re one of those people who buys Swiss chard and throws away the stalks. They’re equally as delicious as the leaves, but many people are in a quandry knowing what to do with them. They make great fritters, something my mom made when we were growing up, (recipe here), but another way to use them is in a vegetable soup — perfect for the fall weather that is descending on us here in the Northeastern U.S.
These are the stalks from some multi-colored Swiss chard my father grew in his garden. Just chop them up into small bits, along with the leaves and follow the recipe below.
After you’ve sautéed the onion and garlic, add all the rest of the ingredients to the pot and let it simmer for about a 1/2 hour to 45 minutes. I also added in some fresh corn, since it was summer when I took these photos and corn flavor was at its peak. Add more liquid (water or chicken stock) to the pot if necessary.
Grate some parmesan cheese over the top and serve with some hearty toasted bread that’s been drizzled with olive oil and salt. Enjoy a healthy and delicious bowl of soup.
And while we’re on the subject of healthy, I received this water pitcher from Shantiva and so can you. Aside from serving water in a beautiful, hand-hammered copper pitcher, drinking from a copper vessel has health advantages too, according to Shantiva’s webpage. Water from a copper pitcher can enhance digestion, decrease the risk of bacterial infection, improve cardiovascular and thyroid health and stimulate the brain, among other things. Who wouldn’t want that? Shantiva has graciously agreed to send one of my readers one of these lovely pitchers. All you need to do is leave a comment on this post (NOT in an email) and tell me what healthy food you like to consume after indulging in what you think is bad eating. And don’t forget to leave a way for me to contact you — whether through email or through a blog you may also write.
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- 1 large bunch of Swiss chard, stalks diced and leaves roughly chopped
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 cup of fresh tomatoes, diced (or one small can diced tomatoes)
- 1 small can cannellini beans
- 1 cup of green beans, cut into small pieces
- kernels from two ears of corn (optional)
- 6 cups either water or chicken broth, or a combination of both
- a parmesan cheese rind
- a nice handful of parsley, minced
- salt, pepper to taste
- Pour the olive oil into a large pot and saute the onion and garlic until soft on low temperature. Do not let them brown. Add the rest of the ingredients, except the green beans and the parsley, and let everything cook together for about ½ hour. If you have fresh corn, add the kernels from that too. Add more water or chicken broth if the soup is too thick.
- Add the green beans and cook until they are tender, about ten minutes.
- Stir the parsley at the last minute before serving, to get a fresher taste.
- Remove the parmesan cheese rind, and serve with grated parmesan and Italian bread that's been toasted and smeared with olive oil and salt.