CSA Abundance – Braised Chicken Breast with Bacon and Swiss Chard

Braised Chicken Breast with Bacon and Swiss Chard

We serve Swiss chard to our guests all summer long because it’s one of the staple vegetables that our CSA offers as it grows well in cold climates.  We’ve served it with lemon, balsamic vinegar, garlic, roasted garlic, roasted pine nuts and crumble feta cheese (not necessarily all at once!).  This is my favorite way of preparing it so far.  My husband, who eats green things mostly because they are good for him and not because he really has a love for them, had a third helping of this Swiss chard.

4 chicken breasts, bone in
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 bunch of Swiss chard, chopped and cleaned, stems separate from the leaves
2 teaspoons fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
3 strips bacon, diced
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 400º.  Heat a large skillet (one with a lid), over medium-high heat.  Salt and pepper both sides of the chicken.  Heat the oil and carefully add the chicken breasts, skin side down.  Sear for 8 minutes or until the skin is a deep golden brown.  Turn and sear for another 8 minutes.  While the chicken is cooking on the second side, clear a space and add the bacon keeping it in one spot in the pan.  When it is done, transfer it out of the pan with a slotted spoon.  When the chicken is a golden brown on the second side, remove it from the pan.  Drain the pan of all the fat and return it to the heat.  Cook the garlic for 30 seconds to a minutes being careful not to burn it.  As soon as it’s done, add the Swiss chard stems to the pan to stop the garlic from cooking further.  Sauté for 3-4 minutes and then add the rest of the Swiss chard and the bacon.  Stir all together and return the chicken breasts to the pan.  Cover and bake in the oven for 10 minutes or until the chicken breasts are opaque throughout.

Serves 4

Cook the Book – Sautéed Greens

This is a simple way to use all those greens you are finding at your local Farmers Market and are ready for harvesting in your own garden. Sometimes there is nothing better than sautéed greens with little or no embellishment.  Other times I’ll boost the flavor with Parmesan or feta cheese, roasted nuts, and/or diced tomatoes.

Sautéed Greens

1 pound greens (spinach, Swiss chard, or dandelion greens are all good)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper

Wash then roughly chop the greens. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the olive oil and garlic; cook the garlic for 30 seconds. Add the greens, tossing gently, then add the rest of the ingredients and toss again.  Cook until the greens are tender.  Cooking times will vary depending on the green.  Spinach will go the fastest.

Serves 4