Do you dare to step out of your comfort zone with salad? I know you have moved away from ice berg lettuce (which is still good with a creamy blue cheese dressing retro style).
I’m sure your fridge has seen the likes of baby spinach, micro green, kale and arugula. But, have you considered raw swiss chard as the star of the bowl?
Swiss chard is an amazing green inside of a salad or in this recent sauteed version.
All kinds of salads garnish our table, but this swiss chard salad has become a favorite of every dinner guest this summer and one I feel especially proud of, adding in some southern flavors a bit of Spinach Tiger twist.
When I first wrote this back in 2011, I was a little frustrated at the lack of fresh bright greens in salads. Much has changed in these ten years, and raw swiss chard is taking a place at the table.
Serving greens raw in the south is certainly a new twist on tradition, but one that we should all be heading to, especially during the hot months, where fruit can be added and the palate gets refreshed.
This is a Swish Chard salad that is equally about texture as much as it is the balancing act of fat, salt, and acid.
I am known for my salads. I bring a huge salad to my church group dinner every two weeks and there’s never one bite left. Why? It’s all about the balance of fat, (olive oil) salt, and acid (lemon, vinegar).
I like to use dijon mustard in my vinaigrette to bring the oil and vinegar together. I also like to add in some lemon juice to bring extra brightness. Acid is especially important in greens like kale and swiss chard, helping to break down some of the fibers.
Play Around with this Salad
- Replace nectarines with pears or apples.
- Replace pecans with pine nuts, peanuts, walnuts.
- Use golden raisins if you have them. They really make this salad sing.
More Greens from Spinach Tiger
Swiss Chard, Nectarine and Toasted Pecan Salad
- 1 bunch Rainbow Chard other swiss chard is fine too
- 1 bunch Butter Lettuce one head, rinsed, patted dry
- 1/4 cup pecans chopped coarsely and toasted
- 1 cup Nectarine slices can use peaches or even apples
- 1 tablespoon Dried fruit chopped (optional)
- 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons mixture of white balsamic champange or apple cider vinegar (any combo)
- Big squeeze of lemon
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup avocado oil (or more olive oil
- sea salt
- fresh ground pepper
- Rinse swiss chard and trim stems. Dry leaves and place in salad bowl.
- Toss with dressing and add in dried fruit and toasted pecans. Season with salt and pepper.
- Whisk vinegar into mustard. Add lemon juice.
- Slowly add in the both oils. Season with salt and pepper. You will not use all the dressing most likely. You will need to do your own tasting. The dressing will be pungent, with lots of acid. The sweetness of the peaches, and the salt will help to counteract. But, if you find it too pungent, add more canola or olive oil. This is much more of an inspiration than an exact recipe.
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