Chard, Chickpeas, and Caramelized Chips

Check out this chard.

Go on, bite me. I dare you.

I visit one of my favourite farms every Wednesday, and this week, I was taken over by this gigantic chard.  If chard could knock one down based on dimension, freshness, and squeaky-green beauty, I would have been flat on the farm store floor.  Instead, I snagged it, took it home, and showed it who was boss.

Right after I fought through the thickets of gorgeous edible foliage.

But woman shall not live by chard alone, and since it’s so incredibly cold in Vancouver all of a sudden, I cranked on the oven for baked chickpeas and yam fries (I really never call fries “chips”, but it works for alliterative effect in the title).  The yam fries went in first; they take about an hour to cook with that beautiful caramelized sweet crunch, but are well worth the wait.  Mine were thick-cut, drizzled with sunflower oil, and seasoned with fresh-ground salt and black pepper, then turned four or five times during their bake time at 375.

For oven fries, I love a cast iron skillet. It heats up quickly and holds heat amazingly well, to cook and, more importantly, crisp the fries more quickly than baking pans and roasting dishes.

Finally, I added in chickpeas.  I soaked and cooked a large batch of these tasty little guys a couple days ago, and used abut half in the Chickpea Salad of yesterday’s fame, so tonight just drizzled on olive oil, with a bit of water, fresh thyme, dried basil, salt, pepper, and fresh garlic, onion, and green sweet pepper.  The chickpeas took 20 minutes of baking, and happily shared a spot with the yam fries.

Really simple baked chickpeas.

The end result: a cozy meal that required minimal effort.  Chickpeas prepared this way satisfy my savoury tooth, while the yam fries bake up with a smooth, creamy interior and a crisp, naturally sweet exterior.  The chard stems, which I stir-fry for a few minutes before adding the leaves and lightly steaming, were both crisp and sweet, and the leaves were fresh and sturdy, even after cooking (I like hot greens on a cold day).

Baked chickpeas with garden-fresh chard and caramelized yam fries. The sliced raw carrots also came from the farm, and required nothing more than sweet washing.

11 Comments Add yours

  1. Ally says:

    Oh yum, that looks delicious! A mystery has just been solved for me. I always wondered what chard was. I now know from your photos- In Australia, we call Chard, Silverbeet.

    1. Silverbeet; interesting! It’s good to know one of my favourite veggies by her other name 🙂 Thanks for stopping in!

  2. kyarul says:

    Chile, your chard is gorgeous. I’m still weeping over my empty snail ravaged veg plot!

    1. Snails suck. This chard was amazing, though. Our fledgeling garden plants are still quietly growing (cheerful in the damp). We got such a huge haul last spring from the plants started the previous year, so I’m hoping to be able to snip a leaf here and there to sustain us through the winter, then feast come March, April, and May.

  3. You’re too adorable for words! Your meal looks so delicious.

    I don’t get a lot of time to catch up on blogs that I’m following via wordpress… Is there a way I can subscribe to your blog via email?

    1. 🙂 Thank you! It was so good. I’ve actually been feasting on baked chickpeas a lot now that it’s extra chilly, and I need excuses to use the oven…
      Subscribing: great question! In the bottom right hand corner of the screen (either the main Hard Head Vegan page, or any post at all), there should be a grey Follow box; if you click on it, a box should pop up giving you the option to subscribe via email. Hopefully that works…if not, please let me know and I’ll poke around!

      1. Yeah, I couldn’t figure it out. I’ve got your follow box ticked, but that just means you come up in my wordpress “reader” which I rarely have time to check. I did, however, find settings in my reader that I could change so that I get your posts via email now 🙂

  4. betunada says:

    it’s silly, but fun, of me, to read stuff like this when i’m hungry. this looks good!
    B T W: i have a WP acquaintance, name like GIRRRLLL Earth (i probably don’t have the Girrlll or earth parts correct) who is staunchly VEGAN. you may already “know” her.

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed, Betunada! I, too, enjoy looking at recipes and pictures of tasty food when I’m hungry. Sometimes it fuels inspiration; sometimes it leads to me making the fastest thing possible before hunger grumps take over. I haven’t come across Girrrlll Earth yet, but thank you, I’ll look around and see what she’s up to on her blog!

      1. betunada says:

        i was close:

      2. Thank you…I found her!

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