Monday, August 17, 2015

Week 10: It's Delicious!

The beans and cucumbers are in big time!

A Bucket of Beans.

Boxes of Cukes.
Mid-August is an awesome time of year for the CSA. For everything but our backs ;)

Scott picking down a row of Dragon's Tongue Beans.
While I pick Royal Burgundy Beans, to match
my watch.
This week's share is all about summer. Members can expect: Beans, Cucumbers, Summer Squash/Zucchini, Tomatoes, Basil, Scallions, Chard, Mini Cabbage, and Brokali OR Kale.

Actually, most members will get brokali. We're pretty sure there is close to enough out there for all 60 shares that are going out this week. We'll use a bit of kale to fill in.

The peak of summer harvest is a somewhat easy time to be a CSA farmer. Most members have very few questions over what to do with basil, beans, or cucumbers. However, we do usually have several folks ask what to do with chard. Which is why I am featuring it in this week's recipe.

As we ate this evening, we debated what this new recipe should be called. When Scott suggested Bean and Rice Lasagna with Swiss chard I mentioned that as I was putting it together Seda had asked if I was making vegetable cake (I made it in a cake pan), at which point Seda said "Whatever it's called, it's delicious!" And so it was named.


  • 1 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 2 15 ounce cans of no salt added beans, drained (I used one can pinto and one can kidney) OR 3 cups pre-cooked beans of your choosing
  • 1 1/2 cups high quality salsa, separated (I used a low sodium corn and black bean salsa--I really don't like it when food is too salty!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or 1 to 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 teaspoons whole cumin seeds
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil OR coconut oil
  • 1 bunch chard
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (I used monteray jack)
  • 1 large or 2 medium tomatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium saucepan, over medium/high heat, combine the rice, water, beans, 1 cup of the salsa (reserve the other half cup for later in the recipe), garlic and cumin. Bring to a full boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover the saucepan. Simmer until the rice is completely cooked, about 45 minutes.

In the meantime, separate the chard stems and leaves. Chop the stems into small (about 1/4-1/2 inch wide) pieces and place in one bowl. Chop the leaves roughly and place them in another bowl. Slice the scallions into 1/4 inch pieces and combine them with the chard stems.

Heat the olive or coconut oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the scallions and chard stems. Cook, stirring frequently, until the chard stems are just starting to soften, about 3-5 minutes. Add the chard leaves and remaining half cup of salsa. Stir well until the chard is evenly coated in salsa and has begun to wilt. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook until the chard is tender, about 15 minutes.

Once the rice and chard are both done, layer them into a 9x9 (or there abouts) baking dish thusly: First put half the rice and bean mixture on the bottom of the pan, then add all of the chard mixture, sprinkle half the shredded cheese over the chard, layer on the remaining rice and beans, add a layer of sliced tomatoes, sprinkle on the remaining shredded cheese. 

Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

I knew there was no way I was going to make this plate of food look
pretty, so I went for a spooky skull face instead. See how the chard
leaf in the center kind of looks like a nasal cavity? Bon appetit!

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