Hye Thyme Cafe: Quinoa with Olives and Swiss Chard

Welcome to the Hy
e Thyme Cafe. Although not all of my recipes are Armenian, the name is a little nod to my Armenian grandmother who is no longer with us. The Hye refers to all things related to her homeland, and she represents all things food-related to me, so the two just seemed to go together. I can't even claim that my Armenian recipes are truly Armenian, since Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon, Syria, and even Egypt share so many foods that they've all sort of morphed into one over thousands of years.

Whether you like to cook, bake, have never done either, or just like to play with your food...come on in and join me! :)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Quinoa with Olives and Swiss Chard

Quinoa with Olives and Swiss Chard : Hye Thyme Cafe

I was planning to make a chicken dish for dinner the other night, and since it had been a while since we had Quinoa, I decided to use that in a side dish. I had apples and fennel in mind when I hit the grocery store, but that changed to olives and Swiss chard somehow. I don't think I had ever tried Swiss chard before, but the placard above it stated that the leaves taste mildly of spinach, while the stalks lean toward celery. Sounded good to me! Unfortunately, I couldn't find any Quinoa that day. I was counting on already having some in the pantry - we did, but not enough of the white to go around, so I had to use red. Don't get me wrong, I love the red - it just didn't provide the right color contrast againt the olives and Swiss chard.

The Swiss Chard I found that day was red. I think it would be really cool to make this with Rainbow Swiss Chard if I could find it. That's on my "unicorn" foods list, along with pear tomatoes (had them in Vegas but have never seen them elsewhere), golden beets, rainbow beets, purple carrots, etc.

1 c Quinoa
2 c chicken broth
+/- 2 c mixed olives, chopped 
    (I used a tub from the olive bar - Kalamatas, and Colossal Green 
     marinated in Garlic)
1/2 bunch Swiss Chard
olive oil
salt and pepper
zest of 1 lemon

Bring the broth to a boil, then stir in the Quinoa, reduce to a simmer, pop a top on it, and forget about it for about 15".

Carefully wash and slice your Swiss Chard. I found it to be extremely muddy! I snipped off the very ends of the stalks, then chopped my way up them in about 1/2" segments and sliced the leaves into ribbons.

Saute the Swiss Chard with a bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper, until tender, then add your olives. 

When the Quinoa is done, fluff it with a fork and stir it into the pan, then finish it off with the lemon zest to brighten things up a bit.

Quinoa with Olives and Swiss Chard : Hye Thyme Cafe

See what I mean? It tasted great, but the colors get lost against the red quinoa.  :(

Quinoa with Olives and Swiss Chard : Hye Thyme Cafe

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