Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Swiss Chard and Mushrooms Pasta

Back in Philadelphia... back to our routine, which, I should not call a routine because it's never the same (and fortunately because I don't like routine; it makes me feel old and out of creative thinking). So what's typical day in hot Philly these days?  Please Touch Museum, Smith Memorial Playground, Philadelphia Zoo, Narberth playground or a visit to friends in the morning; a local playground in the afternoon. Because the children are tired after a full morning outside, I have a limited time window to feed the children if I want to avoid any meltdowns, ie, my objective is to minimize time-to-table. I therefore don''t cook much for lunch. If I don't have leftovers, I make up a quick salad (tomatoes-mozzarella-basil is a favorite.) In the evening, well, it depends on how lazy motivated I have been during the day. On a good day, I prep dinner early in the afternoon while my children are getting all their toys out nap. On a average day, I postpone it until dinner time!  And what about those weekly menus? Well, when I am on vacation and if it's just "us", then I don't plan meals. When we were in France and had to feed anywhere between 12 and 25 people on a daily basis, we had to have menus!!! I'll resume the weekly menus when my children are back in school... for the time being, it's improvisation with whatever is in the fridge!
Among all the produces we purchased at the Farmers's market on Sunday (one of our weekly activities), I could not resist a nice-fresh-looking bunch of Swiss chard. And then I came home and thought: what I am going to do with them? It's not like I could just saute them and serve them as a sidedish to my children. This would be calling for disaster! Because let's be honest, my kids are good eaters but there are still limits to their (and my husband's, I am sure) willingness to chew on a sidedish of Swiss chard!!
Validated options in my répertoireSwiss chard tart or a cold Swiss chard soup? Then, I looked at the clock and since it was already 7pm and I had two hungry creatures invading the kitchen, I decided that I was still going to try to serve sauteed Swiss chard  but I was going to hide them among mushrooms and pasta. I used my little helpers to clean and cut the mushrooms while I was taking care of the Swiss chard and pasta. The results? "Comme une lettre à la Poste" : easy-breezy. So next time you go to the Farmers' market (because it's your routine or because you just happen to be passing by one), don't look down at the Swiss chard because you have young children (and a husband) to feed that evening! Bon Appétit!
- 1 bunch of Swiss chard, thoroughly rinsed and chopped in small pieces
- 5-6 white mushrooms (but Cremini would be OK too)
- Pasta
- Creme Fraiche or light cream
- Olive oil, salt and pepper to taste

  • Boil water for the pasta
  • In a pan, saute the Swiss chard in olive oil
  • Add the mushrooms and saute until the stem of Swiss chard is cooked. Reserve
  • Cook the pasta
  • Once cooked, mix in the vegetables. Add creme fraiche, salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve warm.
My Personal Comments:
  • I have added Pine nuts for added crunchiness (but I am sort of addicted to Pine nuts so this is really optional)
  • It does not reheat well so this is best eaten on the same day.
  • Wholewheat pasta is a plus... but if you are already trying to make your children eat Swiss chard, keep the wholewheat pasta for another day!

1 comment:

  1. This sounds good. I love Swiss Chard and usually use it with pasta as well, but instead of creme fraiche I use feta, which gives it a different flavor. I think you'd like it as well.