I absolutely love heading to our local farmer's market this time of year. Strolling down the aisles looking at the rainbow colors of produce just fills me with awe for God's creation.
This week we purchased a bunch of kale, Swiss chard, spring onions, and basket of green beans for under $10! Our local farmer's market also encourages kids to make healthy food choices by giving them a $2 token for any produce (fruit or veggie) at the market. I love seeing my son getting excited to pick out "his" veggie at the market and then proudly carry it in "his" bag :)
As I've mentioned in the other posts in this series (type in "Veggies You Never Thought You'd Love" into the search bar to read them all), eating fresh veggies has not always been something I enjoyed. In fact, I detested them! Over the course of many years, through the journey of learning that eating is not just about satisfying hunger but nourishing my body with the fuel it needs, I have come to love these veggies. With this series, I hope to encourage you to branch out and try a new veggie or two and share the experience with your kiddos or friends.
This week, I'm excited to share with you my favorite summer time veggie dish: Sautéed Swiss Chard + Caramelized Onions. This dish pairs great with meat off the grill or a summer salad. If your not familiar with Swiss chard, this lovely veggie has a stalk that comes in a rainbow of colors. This article on WebMD calls Swiss chard a "powerhouse of nutrition"-- read more here. Filled with vitamins A & C and even with nutrients like magnesium and fiber, Swiss chard not only looks pretty but its pretty good for you top AND it tastes amazing in this dish.
Sautéed Swiss Chard + Caramelized Onions
Author: Caitlyn Hanson -- Living Wellness, www.lwgg.org
Servings: 4 servings, double recipe as desired
Category: Side-dish, Vegetable
Time: 30 minutes
- 1-3 shallots, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium sized yellow or sweet onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 bunch Swiss chard (rainbow is my favorite because of the beautiful colors!) including stems
- 3 tablespoons organic butter (more may be needed based on how much chard you use & temperature you sauté at)
- 1 tablespoon organic extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp of Celtic Sea Salt (or any good mineral salt) or salt to taste
- Melt butter and olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium low heat. Add onion and shallot, stir and cover. Stir occasionally, while prepping the Swiss chard.
- Wash the Swiss chard and then cut the leaves off the stalk (see picture below). Chop the stalk into 2-3 inch sizes pieces and add these to the onions cooking. Cover and sautée for 8-10 minutes or until chard stalks are fork tender.
- While the chard stalks are cooking, chop the Swiss chard leaves roughly.
- Working in batches, add enough Swiss chard leaves to cover the sautéed veggies in the pan. Cover and cook until leaves are wilted. Then stir and add another layer of leaves until all leaves are cooked.
- Remove from heat and salt to taste!
Healthy Eating Tip for Healthy Families:
Tell, Don't Ask + Give Choices: These two tips go hand-in-hand even though they sound like opposites. Let me explain. Children of all ages (even grown up ones too!) love choices. Choices allow kids to feel empowered and have a sense of control. If you've ever spent a few minutes with a child, you know that control is something they are constantly seeking in one way or other.
When it comes to eating, it's no different! Kids want to control what they eat, how they eat, when they eat, how much they eat. You as the adult should hold the control over some of those things while your child holds the control over the others or its something you share control over. Whether you're introducing something new or just serving something that is not their favorite, empowering kids with choices can be...well powerful. As long as you give them the right choices :) Let me give an example:
You want to try this delicious new dish with Swiss chard you read about on your favorite blog. It's a new veggie you've never tried and for sure your kids have not tried. You're committed to walking the walk and showing your kids how to try new foods. Maybe you involve them in the meal planning or in the meal preparation. Now you've created this amazing dish and are about to dish up.
Tell, Don't Ask + Give Choices. Tell: "We're having a new dish tonight" DON'T ask "Would you like to try a new dish tonight?" Why don't we want to ask? Because the answer will probably be "no!" And now we're in full combat mode for control over dinner. Yes/No questions can be dangerous fuel to a child. After you tell, then give choices: "We're having a new dish tonight, would you like to...
- take 2 or 3 bites?
- try a bite of the red part or the green part first?
- dish up your own food or would you like me to do it?
- use a blue fork or red fork?
- take a bite first or should I go first?
By telling, you've provided the expectation. By giving choices, you've allowed your kiddo to have responsibility over some aspect of what they eat. Note: give your kiddos small challenges. If taking a bite of a new food is going to erupt into a major meltdown, could you offer to have them lick the new food? Smell it? Could you do a science experiment with it prior to meal time? Could you do a special taste testing time before introducing it at mealtime. Tell, Don't Ask + Give Choices.
Love these veggie recipe posts and the healthy eating tips for families? Let us know by sharing a comment!
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Disclaimer: This article is not intended to diagnose or treat any illnesses or disease. Please always check with your doctor before beginning any new nutritional or fitness program or before making any nutritional/fitness changes.