Swiss Chard Quesadillas Recipe

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Swiss Chard Quesadillas Recipe - Provided by eHow
Swiss chard straight from the garden makes a quesadilla a hearty, nutrient-rich meal. Discover ways to grow and prepare collard greens with helpful hints from an organic gardener in this free video on garden-to-table cooking. View Video Transcript

About this Author

Willi Galloway

Willi Evans Galloway loves to read, write, talk about, and teach people how to garden organically and grow their own food. For the past five years, she has worked as the West Coast Editor of Organic Gardening magazine. Willi also recently created, a site that serves up gardening and cooking inspiration. Willi lives in Seattle with her husband, four pet chickens, a lawn-destroying Labrador, and way too many tomato plants.

Video Transcript

So, hi, I'm John. And I'm Willi. We live in Seattle, where we grow lot of our own food in our little urban homestead, in West Seattle. Yes, we have chickens and a vegetable garden and we also have bees in our backyard. So, today in Grow, Cook, Eat, we're going to learn about growing Swiss chard, which is a great crop to have, to any garden. A Swiss chard is something that we grow in our garden, every year, because we can eat it at different stages. You can eat it at the baby stage, raw in salads. Or you can let it mature, it gets really big leaves and you can cook those leaves. And we also grow it because Swiss chard costs about three fifty for a little bundle, at a store. At least. And you know, you can buy two packets of seeds for three fifty and grow you know, a year's worth of Swiss chard, for that much. So, it's a super good value crop. I think, I'm going to head out there and start harvesting. So that we can get going with the quesadillas. So, Swiss Chard is a great plant to have, in pretty much any vegetable garden. Because it has these beautiful colored stems. I have some magenta and then, I have some yellow, and I think that this is a bright lights mix. So, it had you know, pink and white and yellow and sort of orange variety all together. Swiss chard is really easy to grow from seed, and interestingly, it's seed is actually a fruit. So there's these nobby little seeds and when you sow them, often more than one plant germinates. So, harvesting chard, you can harvest it at any time after it germinates. When it's young, as I mentioned, it's nice and tender, when it's bigger, it's best to cook. And it's a good idea to just go ahead and use a nice a knife to clip the Swiss chard right off, of the base. So, I'm going to harvest several leaves here because we're going to want to have about three cups of leaves for our Quesadilla recipe. Even though, it's just lunch for two, today, I harvested a pretty big bunch, because Swiss chard really cooks down. And because these stems are so thick, we're actually going to cut them off and not use them. Because they take along time to cook and become tender, so, we're just going to be using the leaf portion. So, I had to harvest quite a bit for lunch today. Now, I'm just going to pull a few onions, and we're going to head inside and make up the Quesadillas. For this recipe, we're not going to use the thick portions of the stalk. We're going to cut that out, remove that first. Next thing I go slicing upwards, so I get the majority of it on each one. And then, what you want to do is, cut into small, thin ribbons, starting from the outside and working your way down. Then we're washing these off, just make sure they're nice and damp, before we add them to the recipe. So, the first thing with quesadillas is, to turn your oven on to about 200. So that, as you cook them, you can keep them warm in the oven. Then you want to turn on your stove to medium and heat up a cast iron or a non-stick skillet. Heat your oil, let it heat up there for a minute. So, when the oil starts to shimmer a little bit, you want to add in the onion. This is a half cup of onion. So, after two or three minutes, the onion should be fairly translucent, and you want to sprinkle the spices over. So, I've got a half a teaspoon of coriander, half a teaspoon of cumin and two teaspoons of this great chili powder, a little bit spicier than some. You just want to stir that around with the onion and let it cook for about 30 seconds, until it's nice and fragrant. Then go ahead and add in the green chilies. And that was three green chilies that were chopped. So, I'm going to cook them for about another minute or so. Then go ahead and put in the Swiss chard and you want it to still be damp, from when you rinse it off. And it'll be a little bit of a challenge to fit it into this skillet, but it cooks down quickly. So, you just start turning it over and it'll start wilting down, pretty quick. If you have tongs, that's kind of the easiest way to stir stuff around. You want to cook the chard until it's tender and it's wilted down and bright green. But you want it to still you know, have a little bit of texture to it, a little bit of bite. So, you don't want to cook it until it's mushed. O.k., so, once the chard's wilted, I'm going to go ahead and put it back into the bowl. And then, stir in the sour cream. You just want to wipe out the skillet, so turn the stove back on to medium. And then, we're going to put in our tortilla. And then, we're going to put about a quarter of this cheese on and wait till the cheese starts to melt, before adding the chard. Then you want to scoop some sour cream, chard, spicy onion mixture in there. I actually at this point, usually like to fold the tortilla over, because it's nice and hot. And then, just cook it on the upside down side, until it's nice and toasted and then, I flip it over. So, John. Hey, it looks ready. Yeah. Sorry, you get the messy one. Alright. Hey, I'm starved. Looks pretty good. Yeah. It's delicious, a little spicier than normal. Well, it's good, it's probably not the healthiest dinner on the planet. But I feel a little bit better about adding chard to our Quesadilla. I always like, how much greens we're using, this stuff is pretty cool. So, what I love about those Quesadillas, is they're just so fast to pull together. And they're definitely healthier than your average Quesadilla. They feel little lighter with the chard in them and a lot more flavorful. Yeah, definitely. So, I hope you will have a chance to try these recipes and eat more greens out of your garden. And join us again on Grow, Cook, Eat, where we're going to be talking about super easy recipes and growing food in your own backyard. And share your comments, so as you change the recipes or have recommendations, we want to hear about it . So, stay in touch. Yeah, see you soon, thank you.