Saturday 10 December 2011

Chard pasta

It's that time of year when food goes over the top. Would you like some brandy butter in your mince pie? Whipped cream on your boozy hot chocolate? A bit of home made shortbread? How about a bacon-wrapped chipolata with your roast turkey and some extra gravy with your mashed potatoes? It'd be rude not to. But somehow the onslaught of festive food seems to drag out through the whole month. It reaches a point where you don't really want another cranberry-topped anything and just want something simple and, well, clean-tasting.

This very straight-forward pasta is just the thing. It's one of those sauces that comes together in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so you can be ready to eat in less than 15 minutes. I added some anchovies to give a salty kick, but if you leave them out and add capers or some sliced olives, you've got yourself a good vegan meal.

Spaghetti with chard and anchovies (serves 2)

Olive oil
3 cloves of garlic
1 large, medium-heat red chilli
4 anchovy fillets (optional)
1 bunch chard
juice of a lemon
pasta, to serve

Warm a good slurp of olive oil in a large sauté pan, add the sliced garlic, chilli and anchovy fillets, and cook gently until the anchovy begins to melt.

Chop the stalks of the chard and add to the pan. When they have sweated down a bit, (which should be about the same time as the pasta is ready) add the shredded leaves of the chard, the juice of a lemon and the drained pasta. As you toss it together, the heat from the pasta will wilt the chard down. Serve in big bowls with lots of black pepper.


leaf (the indolent cook) said...

Oh, chard does go so well here! Clean, simple and fresh.

Caroline said...

Looks great. I get fed up of the expectations that everyone wants to eat rich food for the entire month, it's unnecessary and makes the big meal/special day less so.

Simona Carini said...

I am attracted to chard year round but in particular this time of the year, because it brings a nice note of color. I like the addition of anchovy fillets.

Alicia Foodycat said...

Leaf - it was just the right flavour.

C - That's the thing, it should be a once-a-year blowout, not a whole month!

Simona - the anchovies really made it!

Anonymous said...

sounds wonderful! love chard - I just found your blog and it's lovely, I'm going to follow you and looking forward to more :)

Bettina Douglas said...

Comfort food!

Alicia Foodycat said...

Mary - thank you for visiting!

Mother - I know, it's another cousin to spinach with spirali!

Shu Han said...

love recipes like this: clean, simple, tasty! oh and healthy! this is quite a refreshign break from all the rich indulgent treats I've been seeing on blogs lately.. been trying to work up my xmassy mood but I can't, so i haven;t been doing many xmassy things either ><

Mary Bergfeld said...

What a lovely pasta. The chard must give this dish great flavor and this has to be delicious. I hope you have a great weekend. Blessings...Mary.

Alicia Foodycat said...

Shu Han - I am struggling with Christmas spirit a bit too.

Mary - it was delicious! Have a wonderful day.

Heather @ said...

Yeah, I have to agree. I'm already feeling heavy. This would make the perfect dish to counteract that. For a while, at least ;) Sounds lovely!

Deb in Hawaii said...

Can I leave the anchovies in AND add a few capers. ;-) This looks delicious and full of flavor.


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