Until fairly recently, I was not familiar with chard. Now I’m a total fan. I have rainbow chard growing in my garden, and it gets added to just about everything. Chard salad, chard with yellow squash, chard on pasta, chard instead of lettuce on a salad…the possibilities are endless.
This week, add chard to your diet and enjoy a wonderful new vegetable!
Chard, also known as Swiss Chard, is a close cousin to spinach. As a leafy green, it has been a popular part of the mediterranean diet for years. It can be sautéed, stuffed, eaten raw, on a sandwich and in a salad. It is rich in in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients. Swiss chard is also high in vitamins A, K, and C.
Chard is best July-November. Because of its phytonutrients, it can range in vibrant colors from white to red (ruby chard). When choosing chard, look for bright green leaves and avoid brown coloration.
Why Eat Chard?
According to David Servan-Schreiber: “Vitamin A has the proven capacity to inhibit the growth of cells of several cancer lines.” (Anti Cancer A New Way of Life)
About three dozen antioxidant phytonutrients have been identified in chard, including betalains which provide provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. Chard also contains at least 13 different polyphenol antioxidants, including kaempferol (which is also found in kale, strawberries, and broccoli). Chard’s flavonoid phytonutrients may also offer help for blood sugar control.
Cooking with Chard
Chard is a versatile ingredient. It is also interchangeable with spinach. Here are just a few things you do with it:
Spicy Chard Soup
In this recipe, you might like to use organic dairy products. Trader Joe’s also has a goat milk yogurt that would work as well.