Sunday, 24 January 2016

Bake Me a Rainbow!

Bietola Multicolore con Polenta & Feta Gratinata al Forno 
Baked Multi-Colored Swiss Chard with Polenta & Feta Cheese

I know, I know- it's another one of those dishes that taste better than they look... but at least the ingredients were beautiful before I got my hands on them- haha!

I love Swiss chard anyway- but especially when I see it on sale in these beautiful rainbow colors, I just can not resist! And neither should you!

Oh, of course it tastes EXACTLY the same as regular green and white chard, but the fact that nature gives us this firework display of bright colors to chose from is cause enough for celebrating the fact and turning it into supper!

So, for my wonderful and hearty, yet simple supper, I needed 7-8 stalks of chard approximately (factor in the different leaf sizes of course, 1 onion, about 1 teacup of polenta, around 3 teacups of light vegetable broth, 5-6 cherry tomatoes, a little Feta cheese for the topping, salt, pepper olive oil and nutmeg. 

This is about enough for 2 small servings- or one Saucy Chef sized serving wink emoticon

Oh, it isn't all THAT ugly- but of course the flavor is the important thing and I can promise you that, THAT was fantastic!

I began by sautéing the chopped onion until it began to turn slightly golden and then added the chard stalks, cut into bite-sized pieces and fried them together for 3-4 minutes.

I then added the cherry tomatoes, which I cut into quarters and seasoned with salt, nutmeg and plenty of freshly ground pepper- again for 3-4 minutes.

After that time, I added the leaves, which I cut into 3rd approximately, still wet from rinsing, then put on the lid and let everything steam for a further 3-4 minutes in their own juices.

I then added a little more olive oil to give things a little fresh olive flavor and a nice sheen and took the pan off the heat. popped the lid back on to keep it warm, turned on the oven to get it hot... and quickly prepared the polenta.

I boiled the polenta in a little vegetable broth for around 10 minutes- time enough for it to be partially well cooked- and time enough for the oven to get hot.

It was then simply a case of spooning the chard into a baking dish and pressing it firmly down...

...and then spooning the polenta on top and sprinkling it generously with Feta cheese. I seasoned it with pepper and nutmeg and then popped it into the hot oven, at 180°C, for 20-30 minutes, until it was piping hot and golden brown on top.

Not the most beautiful dish- but amazingly tasty and satisfying... and what's not beautiful about that?

Close your eyes and enjoy the flavor! Haha!

Then open them up and finish off the rest of it whilst it is still hot!

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