Chard, where have you been all my life?

Vegetarian But In No Way Vegan Lasagna


(NOT MY PICTURE)

By some miracle all of my children are asleep at the same time in the middle of the day, and I can’t say I have high hopes for the completion of this particular nugget. Getting straight to the point, I am adding a new standard to not only my vegetarian repertoire, but to the Team-Peña fortnightly rotation as well. I’ve more than established my Seinfeld/Newman relationship with the vegetable, but every so often a new one gets past the gatekeeper, and as luck would have it, I like Swiss Chard. I’m not leaving Mr. P for it, but I like it. I made this for dinner last week when the fearless culinary maven Jess came over for some hair-of-the-Christmas, and I would have made it every night since but for the delightful and ridiculous amount of cheese involved. I was obviously in holiday shock when I undertook the recipe, serving something for the first time to a guest, experimenting with new leaves, and purchasing organic, whole-wheat lasagna noodles. I seemed to have temporarily misplaced my character.

Incorporating two of my favorite things (mushrooms sauteed with nutmeg, and ricotta), it was the sort of delicious that causes you to repress grunts, snorts and moans, and make at least a halfhearted attempt to refrain from wolfing. I found the recipe on Epicurious, and will link instead of typing it out, as I’d suggest only a few alterations. I wound up spooning out about a half cup of onions once they were in the pan with the chard, as the proportion just seemed off, and I’m glad I did. I was out of Extra Virgin, so I used regular and it was just fine, and I have no idea if my bay leaf was Turkish. Finally, I’d recommend any kind of whole-wheat noodles (who really cares if their pasta’s organic?). That last part was not an invitations for smart remarks.

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