Swiss chard is one of the most underappreciated of all vegetables. Most people really don’t know what to do with it, plus I think the name is confusing not to mention the dark green leaves makes people think it is going to be bitter and nasty. But the virtues of Chard are many; it is easy to grow from seed, tolerates poor soil and lack of attention. It also tolerates frost and mild freezes. The taste of chard is delicious, like spinach, but smoother. This humble leaf is also nutritionally dense, carrying with it high amounts of Vitamin A, C and K as well as being rich in minerals, dietary fiber and protein!
I grew a yellow variety this year (it comes in a white ribbed or a rainbow of other colors) and yesterday I took a good amount out of the garden to make ravioli, it is my favorite way to save the delicious harvest for later since the ravioli can be frozen and eaten all winter long!
Swiss Chard and Cheese Ravioli
15 Ounces Whole Milk Ricotta
4 Ounces Shredded Parmesan Cheese
2 Cloves of Garlic (Minced)
1 Large Shallot (Minced)
4 Cups Washed and Chopped Swiss Chard Leaves (only…separate leaves from stems and large ribs)
1 Recipe Pasta Dough prepared for Ravioli (or use ready made wonton wrappers)
1 egg well beaten
1/2 teaspoon fresh basic minced (you can substitute dried)
1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano minced (you can substitute dried)
Combine the ricotta, parmesan cheese, garlic and herbs in a large bowl and set aside. In a straight sided skilled (with a lid) saute the minced shallot with a little olive oil until tender (2-3 minutes). Add the chopped chard, cover and cook until completely wilted. Use an immersion blender to further mince the chard/shallot combination. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely.
Combine the chard mixture with the cheese mixture. Lay out pasta or wrappers on a parchment covered cookie sheet and add approximately a teaspoon of filling to each wonton (don’t overfill).
You can brush with egg and fold the wonton over itself for a smaller ravioli or add a top wonton wrapper (press the edges to seal). Ravioli can be cooked in boiling salted water immediately and served with a bit of butter and salt and pepper or they can be frozen flat for a couple of hours until firm then transferred to plastic freezer bags for long term storage.