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The Beetless Beet

Chard, a member of the beet family, is sometimes called "the beetless beet." That sounds too tragic for such a lively green whose stems come in a rainbow of colors, everything from the snowy white of the Fordhook to the crimson rhubarb chard.

I've typically done a quick sauté - in olive oil with some minced garlic - and topped them with oven-roasted tomatoes. But I've been reading more about chard and am excited to venture towards the more exotic.

Apparently Egyptians sauté chard with garlic and coriander, mash it, and add it like pesto to stews at the last minute to brighten the flavors or they add the garlicky chard to a medley of fava beans and rice flavored with fresh dill and cilantro. I even read about chard in dessert tarts in Provence where tarts are made with chard, grated cheese, rum-soaked raisins, pine nuts, bananas and apples.

I'm more of a savory-kinda-gal. But I'm game for any recipe that uses greens. I think one of the best compliments I ever received: more people would like vegetables if they could all eat at your house.

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