I have a confession to make. I’m not the biggest fan of swiss chard. There I said it. When it comes in the farm share I always struggle a little to figure out what to do with it. I know, I know. It’s really healthy for you. Blah, blah, blah. Trust me, I really do want to like it more, but I just wish there was a way I could eat it without really tasting it.
Well, ask and ye shall receive! This pesto cleverly masks the pungent flavor of the chard all while keeping it’s health benefits intact. If you find swiss chard as difficult to eat as I do, than boy is today your lucky day! I could easily woof down two helpings of this pasta without even thinking twice about what’s in it. Yes, it’s that good.
Swiss Chard Pesto Pasta with Grilled Vegetables
- 1 bunch swiss chard, stems removed, washed and chopped
- 1 clove of garlic, roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts
- 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- salt and pepper
- assorted grilled vegetables (I used leftover grilled zucchini, peppers and onions)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 box penne pasta
- red pepper flakes
- additional Parmesan cheese
In a food processor, add about half of the chopped swiss chard, then add the garlic, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, salt and pepper. Pulse until ingredients are well blended. If your pesto seems too runny, add more chard. If it seems too paste-like, add a bit more olive oil. Set aside. Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta according to package directions. In a saute pan over medium low heat, add the remainder of the swiss chard, grilled vegetables, olive oil and a heaping tablespoon of the pesto mixture. Cook until the chard is wilted and the pesto is well incorporated. Combine pasta and vegetable mixture. Serve topped with Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes.