Swiss Chard & Runner Beans with Pine Nuts and Currants

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Garden beans. Garden swiss chard. Garden carrots. Garden beets. Nothing like fresh produce straight from the backyard.

This is a dish I created because I wanted to use up as much of the stuff I had just picked from my parents garden as possible.

I made it for a friend who came over for dinner and she absolutely loved it as did I.  I hope you will too.  I had to make it again a few days later it was so good, not to mention that because I went back to my parents for a couple nights and so was blessed with more fresh produce.

Runner beans are something I grew up eating in the summer thanks to my dad growing them. I am aware that most people don’t know what runner beans are and that they aren’t that easy to buy.  For those who want to know more about runner beans read this.

Since not everyone has runner beans growing in the garden you can simply substitute regular string beans for the runner beans in this recipe.

Swiss Chard & Runner Beans with Pine Nuts and Currants

2 handfuls runner beans, trimmed and thinly sliced in bean slicer (regular green beans will do if you can’t find runner beans)
2 cups packed swiss chard, trimmed from ribs and torn in large pieces
2 medium shallots, finely sliced
2 medium cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/8 cup currants
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
extra virgin olive oil
optional:   A little bit of grated beet and grated carrot for topping

In a large skillet on med-low, sauté the shallots and garlic in a little olive oil for 5-7 minutes. Until they become a little brown. This will make them nice and sweet.

Meanwhile steam your beans for 5 to 10  minutes (depending on your preference and the kind of beans). Be sure not to overcook them.

Once the shallots and garlic are nice and caramelized add the swiss chard to the skillet and mix well. Cover and cook for a couple minutes until the swiss chard wilts.

Remove from heat, add the beans, pine nuts and currants. Mix everything together really well.  Season with salt and pepper. You can drizzle a little more olive oil on top if you like.

I topped this dish with some freshly grated carrots and beets from the garden.  This is completely optional but it was a yummy addition.  You can also squeeze a touch of lemon juice into the dish if you like.

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