It’s chard cakes for dinner and I’m enamored by the candy-cane striped stalks.

Jessica Dofflemyer ~ all rights reserved
Jessica Dofflemyer ~ all rights reserved

Jeb recites multiplication facts – the 5’s – while I chop.

Friends join us for a simple meal (thanks to Mary’s garden, the Bohemian’s garden and inspiration from the Plenty cookbook).

Chard cakes with herb sauce and fresh tomatoes, basmati rice, and kale salad. Chunks of extra dark, Swiss chocolate for dessert.

Kale Salad

curly kale
olive oil
lemon or lime juice
sea salt
pink grapefruit (peeled and sliced)
purple onion, sliced thinly
pistachio nuts, shelled
random garden herbs

Wash kale and pull from the stalk, breaking bite size pieces into a bowl. Squeeze lemon or lime over leaves. Douse with olive oil. Work (or “massage”) lemon/lime and olive oil into the kale with your hands until it becomes soft.

Add sea salt to taste.

Toss in any chopped herbs from the garden (basil, green onions, cilantro, etc.). Add bite size pieces of arugula and toss.

Sprinkle with purple onions, add pink grapefruit pieces and top with pistachios.

Jessica Dofflemyer ~ all rights reserved
Jessica Dofflemyer ~ all rights reserved

As for Plenty’s “Chard Cakes With Sorrel Sauce”, I adapt the recipe to what’s in the larder. Toast macadamia nuts instead of pine. Add romano cheese instead of kashkaval. I have no sorrel for the sauce, so I improvise with fresh marjoram and garlic chives.

Plenty is a fantastic cookbook, but for me, best approached with a willingness to substitute. It’s filled with delicious vegetarian recipes, though they often feature ingredients (saffron, for example) that I just don’t always have handy in the cupboard.

The New York Times reprinted Plenty’s chard cake recipe and here’s the link.

Bon appetit!
Na zdraví! (Czech)
To Health!


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