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This recipe for chard was a runaway hit at my house, even when the kids were little. I don't remember its' exact provenance, in part, because it is so simple that I memorized it early on. I understand that it is a classic Italian preparation, and have seen and tried several variations. None were as good as this recipe, to my taste. The marjoram and thyme are an unbeatable combination for this dish.
Four Large, or Six Small Servings
Put the raisins in a small bowl and cover them with hot water. Let them soak until you are ready to add them to the dish.
Clean the chard: Fill a sink or a large pot with cold water and swirl the leaves around gently to allow the soil to sink to the bottom. Drain them in a large collander stem-end up.
Trim the chard by cutting away the green from the stems. Trim the stems, discarding the dry ends. Cut into 1/2 inch pieces. Cut the green parts coarsely into about 1-1/2 inch wide strips.
Put the butter and oil in a large saute pan and melt over a low heat.
While the butter is melting, use a small frying pan to toast the pine nuts. Heat the pan over a medium heat. Add the nuts, and toast, stirring frequently until they begin to brown slightly. Turn off the heat under the pan.
When the pan with the oil is heated, add the thyme and marjoram. Stir and add the chard promptly. The chard is very bulky until it cooks down. I use tongs at first to turn it over in the pan and thoroughly mix the oil and herbs through the chard.
As soon as the chard is down to a manageable volume, add the drained raisins. Turn the heat very low and cover for just a few minutes until the chard wilts completely.
Taste the chard, and add salt and pepper as desired. Immediately prior to serving, stir in the pine nuts, or serve them on the side.
This is a very forgiving recipe, so adjust amounts to suit your needs. I highly recommend using the olive oil and butter combination. I've used straight olive oil and it just isn't quite as fabulous, but I am sure you could cut down the total amount of oil/fat with no adverse effects to flavor.
This recipe was provided by Barbara Moeller from Austin.