Since I joined CSA, I have cooked greens I've never had before, or greens I tried once a long time ago and dismissed for some reason. Mustard greens. Kale. Spinach. Swiss Chard. I'm loving the experimenting and truly enjoyed testing this recipe for Swiss chard pasta with bacon bits. Hey, Swiss chard is great, but everything tastes better with bacon... or just a sprinkling of bacon bits in this case.
COMMUNITY SUPPORTED AGRICULTURE: A GREAT WAY TO SUPPORT LOCAL FARMERS
But before I get into that, I would like to welcome you to my Community Supported Agriculture Series. I bought a summer farm share at Clark Farm in Carlisle, MA. This is very exciting. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is all about supporting local farms by buying a share of their harvest before the growing season and receiving farm fresh produce every week for a certain period of time.
I thought it would be fun to post new recipes each week where I use my fresh, organic farm veggies in recipes that you can make too! I know there are a lot of people out there who do CSA in the summer. So this is for all of you!
Swiss Chard Pasta is easy to make and here's a tip: don't throw that pasta water away!
Back to how everything tastes better with bacon. You can sautée Swiss chard, steam it, roast it, braise it. You can even eat it raw. I wanted to make it part of an entree and I was craving pasta so here we are! And pasta with bacon is one of my faves. If you watch how-to cooking shows or cooking competition shows, you already know this: don't you dare throw that pasta water away.
There is a reason you see chefs put an unfathomable amount of salt in the water before cooking pasta. Salt is the only chance we have to season the pasta in a meaningful way. The starchy, salty pasta water can also be used to create a sauce that is somehow creamy - like you added butter or cream... but you didn't.
That's the goal here. The base of the creamy-like sauce is really just a little olive oil, pasta water, and a couple of spoonfuls of shaker parmesan cheese. I love sauces and I go big when I make spaghetti and red sauce. I will load up on sauce for that. But I also really love a simple sauce that is less like a sauce and more of a coating for the pasta. That's what this Swiss chard pasta with bacon bits recipe is all about.
Swiss Chard Pasta with bacon bits is still a lighter meal
It's worth noting, even though I was totally craving pasta when I was thinking of what I could do with the Swiss chard, the meal itself wasn't overwhelming. It still felt like a light meal. You can eat this as a main course or serve a small portion with a salad on the side. It would also pair well with chicken, fish or beef.
I hope you enjoy this one! Remember: anyone can cook! Don't be afraid of your kitchen. Get to know your kitchen. Prepare wonderful food there and share it with your loved ones. Tell your stories. Laugh. Build your relationships. You're not alone in the kitchen - I'll be there every step of the way. You can follow along with my video as you make this. So simple.
If you're looking for additional CSA recipes, you can go here. If you're looking for another great pasta option, try my Chicken & Broccoli Penne Pasta with Garlic White Wine Sauce.Print