Italian Vegetable Ragout with Chard
Here’s a warming dish of all-season veggies, including plenty of greens. This quick, hearty dish can be served over grains, pasta, or polenta. Though I favor chard in this dish, there’s no reason not to try it with other greens, such as those listed under variations, or any others you may have on hand. Adapted from Wild About Greens. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky, from her review on BitterSweet.
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 small eggplant, diced (see Note)
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups sliced cremini or baby bella mushrooms
- 1 medium zucchini, or 1 yellow summer squash
- 10 to 12 ounces chard, (any variety)
- 15- to 16-ounce can diced tomatoes (use Italian-style or fire-roasted)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 cups cooked or on 15- to 16-ounce can white beans or chickpeas
- 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
- 6 to 8 leaves fresh basil, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup sliced oil-cured sun-dried tomatoes, or more, to taste
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Dried hot red pepper flakes to taste
Heat the oil in a steep-sided stir fry pan or large steep-sided skillet. Add the onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until both are golden.
Layer the eggplant, mushrooms, an squash in the pan in that order and pour in 1/2 cup water. Cover and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, strip or cut the chard leaves away from the stems. Slice the stems thinly, and cut the leaves into narrow ribbons.
Add the tomatoes, oregano, and thyme, and give everything a good stir. Stir in the chard and beans. Cover and continue to simmer over low heat for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are just tender.
Stir in the parsley, basil, and dried tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and give the dish a subtle heat with the red pepper flakes.
Note: Use any of the very small varieties of eggplant—purple, Japanese, red striped, or white. The skin is more tender on these varieties and you need not peel them.
Variations: This is also good with broccoli rabe, escarole, or any variety of kale or spinach. You can also add beet greens to this dish, or substitute them for part of the chard.