Chard with Tomato Romesco Rice Bowl

At least once a week I try to make something that is completely vegetarian, as opposed to just vegetable heavy. I have never cooked chard before so I was pretty excited about this recipe from The Kitchn, which uses a savory tomato and nutty sauce (I cut it down to 2 servings).

1 1/4 cups brown rice

4 to 5 leaves of chard (ribbed and roughly chopped)
1/2 Tbs. lemon, juiced
1/2 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon canola oil
1 garlic clove, diced
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Romesco sauce:
1/4 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
Kosher salt and ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 (4-ounce) jar sliced pimiento peppers, drained
1/2 (12-ounce) can plum tomatoes, drained
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (I got a little heavy handed with the spice but it enhanced the flavor)
1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup almonds (I used sliced almonds)
1/4 cup loosely packed cup chopped Italian parsley

Cook rice according to the instructions.

To cook the chard, rinse the chard well then pat dry. (Drying the chard was difficult because I sparingly use paper towels and the leaves hold a significant amount of water.) Mix the lemon juice and vinegar in a small bowl.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large, deep skillet or wok over high heat. Add the garlic and sauté or stir-fry just until it begins to color (make sure to take off the heat earlier than browning, since the garlic will continue to cook in the hot oil). Add the chard and sauté lightly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour the lemon juice and vinegar and continue cooking for 30 seconds to 1 minute. The chard will cook down, much like spinach. (I prefer it is slightly undercooked to maintain some crunch.)

To make the romesco sauce, heat the olive oil in a a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Cook until the onion begins to soften. Add the pimiento peppers and the tomatoes; stir vigorously to help the tomatoes break up (I used a hard spatula). Cook for about 5 minutes, or until the tomatoes begin to break down. Add the smoked paprika, vinegar, almonds, and parsley and remove from the heat.

Blend in a food processor. It stayed relatively chunky but added to the texture. I sprinkled sliced almonds and parsley on top for color. Image

While typically I am not a huge fan of brown rice, the romesco sauce made this dish savory and filling.


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