|Seven year-old Bennet helped clean the chard and whip the eggs.|
The Importance of Greens, Eggs, and Children
My friend Anita just harvested huge amounts of Swiss and rainbow chard from her garden. Regina and I were the lucky beneficiaries of part of this harvest; Anita was frankly glad to get rid of it. I think she and her husband Shawn were “chardded out”. Regina and I love our greens, so we were delighted to take some.
For last night’s dinner I made a Swiss Chard frittata. I enlisted my son into some of the grunt work. He happily washed the chard, dried it in a lettuce spinner, and then cut it with scissors into small pieces. He also assisted in cracking the eggs and whisking them. I love getting Bennet involved in the cooking process. I remember the joy I had in helping my mother prepare dinner, and I love observing him learn and absorb new things.
I feel it’s very important to get children interested in food preparation. It’s the precursor, of course, to giving them the confidence to fend for themselves, and it’s becoming increasingly critical in giving them the knowledge and power to make smart food choices in a world in which we often have no idea of the source of the food we ingest. When you learn to touch and taste and make your own food, you care more and understand more about where our food comes from, how it’s processed, how it’s transported, and how to change those things. I hope these lessons I give Bennet now will have a lasting, positive influence on the way he eats and thinks about eating.
Anyway, the bounty of chard made for a wonderful frittata. Healthy, delicious, very easy and quick to make, and dirt cheap!
10-inch heavy-bottomed, non-stick, oven-proof saute pan (or well-seasoned skillet)
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 small russet potato, peeled and diced
salt and pepper
1 shallots, peeled and sliced
About 4 cups of Swiss chard, cleaned and chopped
1/4 cup white wine
6 large eggs, beaten
3/4 cup cheddar cheese, grated
Do it like this:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Heat your pan over medium-high heat. Add one tablespoon olive oil. Add diced potato and season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing and stirring occasionally, until softened but not mushy, about four minutes. Add shallot and saute for another two minutes. Add chard and season with more salt and pepper. Saute for another five minutes or until chard has wilted significantly and reduced down a whole lot. Add white wine and turn heat to high. Stir occasionally and cook until wine has evaporated.
Add another tablespoon of olive oil and reduce heat back to medium-high. Pour beaten eggs over cooked veggies. Let eggs set around the edges for one minute and then, using a rubber spatula, push edges in to get more uncooked egg into contact with the hot pan.
Put saute pan into the oven and cook for about five minutes, or until the eggs have mostly set. Scatter cheese over the top of the frittata. Return eggs to the oven and cook another five minutes. Now remove the pan and turn the oven to a high broil. Put the skillet back in the oven and broil for a few minutes or until it’s lightly browned.
Remove the pan from the oven and gently loosen the frittata by running the rubber spatula around the edges. Carefully slide the frittata out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Cut into wedges and serve.
|He’s not certain he likes chard, but he loved helping!|
This frittata makes a great brunch item, a killer side dish for a casual weekday meal, and a great lesson in cooking economically and as a family.