silverbeet from the garden

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My first crop of silver beet was ready to harvest. But, what to cook? I consulted two of my favourite cooks, Stephanie Alexander and Yotam Ottolenghi. The following recipes were so delicious, I will definitely be making these again.

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Ottolenghi’s Warm salad of chickpea, silverbeet and carrot with lemony yoghurt

300g silverbeet or Swiss chard, washed

40ml olive oil, plus extra to drizzle

4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1cm dice

1 tsp caraway seeds

400g tin chickpeas

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

1 Tbsp fresh mint, torn

1 Tbsp fresh coriander, torn

1 Tbsp lemon juice

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 cup thick Greek style yoghurt

zest and juice of 1 lemon

 

Separate chard stalks and leaves. Chop stalks into 1 cm pieces, roll up leaves and chop into 2cm strips. Bring a medium pot of water to the boil, add stalks and cook for 2 minutes, add leaves and cook for further 2 minutes. Then drain and refresh under cold water. Drain again, wrap in clean tea towel and squeeze out excess moisture. Chop roughly and set aside.

Heat oil in large heavy based pan. Add carrots and caraway seeds and cook for 5 minutes. Add chard and chickpeas and cook for 6 minutes. Add garlic, herbs, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Remove from heat and allow to cool a little.

Mix yoghurt with lemon juice and zest and serve with the salad.

 

Serves 4.

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Stephanie’s crustless silverbeet, pinenut and olive tart

 

300g silverbeet leaves and stems, washed well, leaves and stems separated

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp pinenuts

4 spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

12 black olives, pitted and coarsely chopped

½ cup fresh breadcrumbs

sea salt and freshly ground pepper

2 free range eggs

½ cup Greek yoghurt

20 butter, melted,

2 Tbsp grated parmesan

 

Preheat oven to 180C.

Bundle silverbeet leaves together and cut into 2cm wide ribbons. Slice really thick stems lengthwise into 1cm wide strips then 1cm pieces.

Drop stems into a pan of simmering water for 2 minutes. Add leaves and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Drain in a colander. Refresh with cold water then squeeze out excess moisture. Roll up in a clean teatowel to extract as much liquid as possible.

Chop roughly and tip into a bowl.

Heat 2 tsp oil in a large frypan over medium heat and sauté pinenuts until golden. Remove and set aside. Add remaining oil to pan and saute spring onions and garlic for 30 seconds. Add silverbeet and mix well, sauté for 1 minute.

Tip mixture into bowl then stir in olives, pinenuts and 2 Tbsp of the breadcrumbs. Season to taste with salt and pepper and leave to cool.

Lightly whisk eggs and yoghurt, then tip into silverbeet mixture.

Grease a 20cm pie dish with melted butter, then coat base and sides with remaining breadcrumbs.

Tip silverbeet mixture in and scatter over parmesan.

Bake for 25 minutes or until firm.

Serve warm or cold.

 

Serves 6.

 

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