This beans and greens recipe is made with garden fresh swiss chard greens and cannellini beans. Makes a great side dish or appetizer.
Beans and greens is a dish we’ve ordered as an appetizer at many Italian restaurants. Often it is served with sliced baguette bread. The first time I had it, I could not believe how good it tasted. I could have eaten it for my entire meal.
One thing I didn’t know, bean and greens or greens and beans, is actually a Pittsburgh thing. I came upon this recently in an article on Bon Appetit where they talk about this dish having Southern Italian origins. Since many immigrants came to the Steel City from Italy it’s no wonder they brought the deliciousness of beans and greens with them.
I saw this huge bunch of red swiss chard at the nursery at a local farm. It was so big and beautiful I had to buy it and make some beans and greens. This time we ate it as a side dish with salmon.
After washing the leaves you can easily remove the stems by folding them in half lengthwise, and slice down the stem.
Toss the stems in the compost or save them to make vegetable stock.
The leaves can then be roughly chopped and sauteed in a large pan.
As you might imagine there are many ways to make this dish. Using beans from a can is probably sacrilege for some Italians, but in my opinion, they work just fine. You can use different kinds of greens, different beans and different add-ins like pepper flakes, and cheese.
They all work really well. However, when you are able to buy lovely freshly picked greens from the farm, the choice is a no-brainer.
- 1/4 cup Olive Oil
- Large bunch of Swiss Chard Greens
- 2 large cloves fresh garlic, sliced thin
- 1 can cannellini beans drained
- 1/4 cup vegetable stock
- 1 tablespoon vinegar
- pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
- Wash and dry the greens.
- Remove the stems by folding in half and cutting along the stem. Roughly chop and set aside
- In a large saute pan heat olive oil and add garlic slices.
- Saute for 1-2 minutes. Stirring so that the garlic does not burn. Remove garlic from pan.
- Add greens to oil an saute until slightly wilted 1-2 minutes.
- Add beans, stock, sherry and pepper flakes.
- Stir well and continue cooking on medium-low heat until the liquid is mostly absorbed.
- Serve as a side dish or with thinly sliced baguette rounds for an appetizer.
This can also be made with other greens such as kale, spinach, or escarole. Substitute great northern beans for cannellini beans too. Instead of sherry use red wine or red wine vinegar. It's all good.
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 180 Total Fat 10g Saturated Fat 1g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 8g Cholesterol 0mg Sodium 328mg Carbohydrates 19g Fiber 6g Sugar 1g Protein 7g