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Milanese-Style Chard

1 large bunch Swiss chard
1 bunch green onions
1 large clove garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/4 cup chopped basil
Pinch of nutmeg
1/4 cup chopped prosciutto or ham
2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons roasted pine nuts (or walnuts if desired)

Trim and coarsely chop Swiss chard. Thinly slice green onions. Mince garlic. In olive oil, saute the onions and garlic until soft (2 to 3 minutes.) Add chard, chopped parsley, chopped basil, nutmeg and chopped prosciutto or ham. Mix well. Cover and cook 3 to 5 minutes until tender and wilted.

Mix in Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with roasted pine nuts or walnuts, if desired.

Note: Chard is really just a beet that which was bred for its greens. The leaves can be steamed or sauteed with onion and a little lemon juice and served as a side dish similar to spinach. Or cut into strips, leaves can be added to legume soups. The stems can be blanched and served like asparagus or used in stir-fries. When preparing, remember the stems and ribs will take longer to cook than the leaves. Chard, as well as other dark green leafy vegetables, is rich in folic acid -- essential to health and shown to reduce risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease.

-- Don Kretschmann's newsletter

Thursday, August 31, 2000

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