Sunday, January 2, 2011

Bacon and Swiss Chard Pasta

I have a bunch of swiss chard sitting in my fridge which I bought for one recipe that I'll be blogging soon. But, that recipe wouldn't consume the whole entire bunch so I had to find a new recipe to try so that the chard didn't go to waste. I found this recipe on Epicurious.com and I chose it because it was a simple list of ingredients with simple prep, and I had everything on hand.

I did modify the recipe a little bit. The main changes I made were to first, add two cloves of garlic because what's a pasta meal without garlic? Second, I didn't use olive oil or balsamic vinegar because I think balsamic can be pungent and figured it'd detract from the yummy flavors already going on and I had already sauteed everything in bacon grease, why add even more oil? Third, I only sprinkled parmesan on the top vs. using 2/3 cup as the recipe calls for just to keep the salt down a little. Again...everything was sauteed in bacon grease and topped with crumbled bacon - plenty of salt! Other minor tweaks were made, and I've written the recipe below with the modifications.

Give this a try when you've got some swiss chard to use. Or, if you just want a good excuse to cook bacon.

Here's the recipe on Epicurious.com: Bacon & Swiss Chard Pasta
Serves 3 (or two very generous portions)
Ingredients:
  • 1/2 pound linguine or thick spaghetti
  • 6 ounces of bacon
  • 1 medium yellow or white onion thinly sliced
  • 1/2 large bunches Swiss chard, thoroughly washed, stemmed, chopped (about 4 cups)
  • 1 large or two small cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/8 tsp Pepper
  • Parmesan for serving

Directions:
  1. Cook linguine/spaghetti in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid.
  2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until beginning to crisp, about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Crumble when cool.
  3. Drain all but 1-2 tablespoons bacon drippings from skillet. Add onion and saute over medium-high heat until softened, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute.
  4. Add Swiss chard and sprinkle with pepper. Add pasta cooking liquid to skillet. Toss until chard is wilted and tender, about 4 minutes.
  5. Add linguine and crumbled bacon to skillet and toss to coat. Transfer to serving bowls and top with parmesan cheese and serve hot.
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