Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Chard Challenge

We are always looking for ways to sneak more vegetables into our meals. Everyone around here likes veggies, but we just get tired of same old same old.  At the same time, new vegetables can look very intimidating as they stare accusingly from the fridge. Yes, we are talking about you, Mr. Swiss Chard. We’ve had and enjoyed Swiss chard at my mother-in-law’s table, but try getting a recipe out of her sometime.  Sample answer: “Easy, you just cook it in a pan!”
 Easy for her to say.

As we were coming down the home stretch with the second book collector mystery, we were spending a lot of time together and eating more lunches at MJ’s house. This  lunch or brunch was fun to make and actually much quicker than the directions might lead you to think. We liked it enough to add it to our favorites. 

Swiss Chard and Potato Hash with Eggs

1 ½ pounds baby potatoes or new potatoes, quartered
2 tsp. olive oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp butter
1 pepper, sliced and seeded
1-2 cloves garlic, minced (use more or less depending on how much you like garlic)
3 cups Swiss chard, coarsely chopped (give or take)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese or your favorite cheese
Salt & pepper to taste
Pinch of paprika
4 – 8 eggs


Cook potatoes in boiling, salted water until tender (15 minutes) 
Heat oil in a frying pan and cook onion over medium-low heat, until carmelized – at least 10 minutes. 

Remove from pan and set aside.
Add potatoes to the same pan and cook until lightly browned.  Season with salt and pepper. 

Add the red pepper and garlic and cook for a few minutes. 


Toss in the chard and the onion and cook until wilted.  This doesn’t take long! 

Stir in the cheese and cook until it melts.   


Remove to a heated plate and keep warm.  


Wipe the pan clean. Add the remaining oil and cook eggs over medium heat. Cover until the whites are set and the yolks are still runny. Of course, you could also poach the eggs or cook them over easy. Whatever suits.  

Serve the potato mixture topped with the eggs.  1 or 2 per person to suit your brunch companions.  Season to taste and dust with a little sweet paprika.  Enjoy!

Season to taste and dust with a little sweet paprika.  

If you have a favorite way with Swiss chard, please let us know. We're hooked now.

Victoria Abbott is a collaboration between Victoria Maffini and her mother,  Mary Jane Maffini. The Christie Curse, their first book collector mystery, launched in March 2013 and  The Sayers Swindle, the second in the serie,s will be out in December. They've just seen the cover. Please let them know how you like it! 

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  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Avery! Your own posts are always picture perfect!

  2. What a lovely lunch. Or brunch. Or even dinner! I love Swiss Chard. I've never tried adding cheese, though. Hmm, maybe over pasta?


    1. I think it would be great on pasta, Krista! Thanks for that idea!

  3. Wee-ha! Swiss Chard was my beloved aunt Mary's first choice when it came to "greens"--great recipe for summer and incredibly nutritious (she typed between coughs. I think my entire neighborhood has come down with the same pre-summer cold), which means I'll be making this sooner rather than later. In the meantime, have a wonderful weekend, Victoria and MJ!

    1. Get better soon, Cleo. Pre-summer colds are so frustrating. Beautiful weather at least and you're stuck inside.

      Have a wonderful reading week-end. That's always the upside of colds.

  4. I think we will all like this dish which is similar to one that my MIL made, though we have never added chard. We beat the eggs and scrambled them in, last thing. I have never tried chard, can you believe.
    The new book cover is lovely!

    1. Thanks, Nancy. I like the idea of scrambling in the eggs at the end. We``ll try that for sure. So glad you like the cover!

      MJ and Victoria

  5. I love Swiss chard. The multi-colored type is great fun (rainbow chard).
    I cut the stems away from the leaves. Chop the stems into 1/2' or so pieces and do the same to the leaves, keeping them separate. Into a skillet where I've cooked some onion (and garlic if you like), stems first, with a little water. Cover and leave at medium heat for 1-2 minutes. Then I toss in the leaves, cover, turn off the heat and leave while I organize whatever else I'm having. Herbs of your choice can be sprinkled in with the leaves to allow them to hydrate.
    Simple and yummy with a tiny bit of butter and some Bragg's liquid (or tamari soy sauce).
    Reheat as needed.
    I like your combination with potato and eggs along with the chard. Sound really tasty.

    1. This sounds great, Libby and very quick too. It`s on the list because I have Swiss chard in the fridge. Just the boring green one, but I really want the multi-colored version. I`ve never seen it here.

      Thanks for this recipe!

      MJ and Victoria