Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Quick vegan lunch

Spinach and kale were the leafy greens that were popular at my house in Northern Germany when I grew up. We ate a lot of those, especially kale in the winter time. I still love both of those veggies. Unfortunately, Italians are not very familiar with kale; could be because it's a warmer climate and kale needs to get frost at least once before you can harvest it. Instead of kale, I noticed a leafy green vegetable that I had not been very familiar with: swiss chard. Italians eat lots of it as a side dish or as part of a casserole. Even I use it on a regular basis. It's easy to prepare and you can store it for up to three days in the fridge. Here is what I do: 

1) Wash the swiss chard really well
3) Cut it into small, small pieces, not thicker than 1/2 inch by 1/2 inch
4) Throw in salted, boiling water
5) Let cook for about 12-15 minutes
6) Strain and let all the water evaporate
7) In a heated pan add some vegetable oil and some cut up garlic
9) Fry until the garlic gets golden coloured
10) Add your swiss chard to the pan and fry for 3-5 minutes
11) Add water or stock if the greens are about to burn
12) Serve as a side dish or by itself with a slice of bread

Yesterday I found some carrots, swiss chard and green onions in our fridge and came up with this delicious wok dish. If you don't have a wok, a skillet works just fine.

Ingredients (serves at least two):
- 1 swiss chard
- 3-4 medium sized carrots
- 1-2 green onions
- 1/2 liter or 2 cups vegetable stock
- chinese style (chow mein) wheat noodles (70 grams per person)
- garlic (of you wish)
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil

Heat vegetable stock. Wash and cut veggies into 1 cm cubes, cut the green onions much smaller than that. In a wok or skillet heat coconut oil. Once it's hot add carrots first as they need a bit longer. Once they get a bit crispy add green onions (and garlic of you wish). Make sure the onions don't burn. After 30 seconds add swiss chard and some of your stock. Let cook for about 8-10 minutes. Once the swiss chard is cooked half way through, add remaining stock and noodles. Turn off the heat. Cover with a lid and let stand for about 10 minutes (see indications for noodles). After ten minutes, the liquid will be absorbed (of not, drain the remaining stock) and what remains is a healthy, all vegan noodle-swiss-chard-carrot-dish you will fall in love with!

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