Check out this chard.
I visit one of my favourite farms every Wednesday, and this week, I was taken over by this gigantic chard. If chard could knock one down based on dimension, freshness, and squeaky-green beauty, I would have been flat on the farm store floor. Instead, I snagged it, took it home, and showed it who was boss.
But woman shall not live by chard alone, and since it’s so incredibly cold in Vancouver all of a sudden, I cranked on the oven for baked chickpeas and yam fries (I really never call fries “chips”, but it works for alliterative effect in the title). The yam fries went in first; they take about an hour to cook with that beautiful caramelized sweet crunch, but are well worth the wait. Mine were thick-cut, drizzled with sunflower oil, and seasoned with fresh-ground salt and black pepper, then turned four or five times during their bake time at 375.
Finally, I added in chickpeas. I soaked and cooked a large batch of these tasty little guys a couple days ago, and used abut half in the Chickpea Salad of yesterday’s fame, so tonight just drizzled on olive oil, with a bit of water, fresh thyme, dried basil, salt, pepper, and fresh garlic, onion, and green sweet pepper. The chickpeas took 20 minutes of baking, and happily shared a spot with the yam fries.
The end result: a cozy meal that required minimal effort. Chickpeas prepared this way satisfy my savoury tooth, while the yam fries bake up with a smooth, creamy interior and a crisp, naturally sweet exterior. The chard stems, which I stir-fry for a few minutes before adding the leaves and lightly steaming, were both crisp and sweet, and the leaves were fresh and sturdy, even after cooking (I like hot greens on a cold day).