Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Swiss chard and rice soup

I made this yesterday with my Lay Nay Ferme greens and it's delicious!
created by Martha Rose Shulman
This is a simple and comforting soup that is especially delicious in the spring, when Swiss chard is at its sweetest and most tender.
2 pounds Swiss chard (2 generous bunches)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, finely diced
Salt to taste
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 quarts chicken stock, vegetable stock or water
A bouquet garni made with a bay leaf and a couple of sprigs each parsley and thyme
1/2 cup basmati rice
Freshly ground pepper
Freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)
Freshly grated Parmesan for serving (optional)
1. Trim the bottoms of the chard stems. If the stems are thin and fibrous, separate the leaves and discard the stems. If they are wide, separate the leaves and cut the stems into 1/4-inch dice. Set aside with the celery and onion. Wash the leaves in 2 changes of water and chop medium-fine.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy soup pot and add the onion, celery and chard stalks. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables begin to soften, about 3 minutes, and add a generous pinch of salt. Continue to cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are tender, another 3 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the stock or water, bouquet garni and rice. Bring to a boil, add salt to taste, reduce the heat, cover and simmer 10 minutes.
3. Stir the chard into the soup, cover and simmer another 10 minutes. Add freshly ground pepper, taste and adjust the salt. Serve with fresh lemon wedges for people to squeeze into their servings if desired and Parmesan for sprinkling.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings.
Advance preparation: This can be made through Step 2 a day or two ahead. It can be frozen. The rice will absorb liquid as it sits, so you may want to add more when you reheat.
Nutritional information per serving (4 servings): 191 calories; 5 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 1 gram polyunsaturated fat; 3 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 milligrams cholesterol; 33 grams carbohydrates; 5 grams dietary fiber; 491 milligrams sodium (does not include salt to taste); 10 grams protein
Nutritional information per serving (6 servings): 128 calories; 3 grams fat; 0 grams saturated fat; 0 grams polyunsaturated fat; 2 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 milligrams cholesterol; 22 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams dietary fiber; 327 milligrams sodium; 6 grams protein

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