Sunday, April 5, 2009

Chard & Onion Torta

This is a fantastic recipe adapted from Deborah Madison's cookbook Vegetarian Suppers. My favorite time to serve it is brunch though it most certainly works for lunch and dinner too...

4 tbsp ghee,
1 cup bread crumbs made in the food processor (don't make them fine, you want a variation in texture and larger chunks)
1 large yellow or white onion
2 pinches of saffron threads
1 tsp thyme leaves, chopped or 1/2 tsp. dried
2 big bunches of chard, leaves sliced from stems and chopped into 1" pieces
salt and pepper to taste
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 cup Gruyere cheese
1/4 freshly grated Parmesan plus a bit more for the top
3 eggs
1 cup milk or light cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix 2 tbsp ghee with the bread crumbs in a bowl with your hands then press them into a baking dish, filling the bottom and coming up slightly on the sides. If you have any extra bread crumbs keep them to add later.
Heat the other 2 tbsp of ghee in a heavy skillet on low-medium. Add the onion garlic and saffron threads. Cook, stirring often, until the onions are soft and starting to caramelize on the edges.
Add the chard and season with a pinch of salt. Cook until the chard is tender and wilted about 8 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in any extra breadcrumbs. Add the cheese, eggs, cream and black pepper. Once all ingredients are combined, transfer to the baking dish and grate a little extra Parmesan over the top. Bake until golden and nearly firm throughout. It should take about 30 minutes, just be sure the eggs are set before removing from the oven.
Remove and let sit for several minutes before serving.

It's delicious accompanied by a beet salad with goat cheese and balsamic vinaigrette.

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