Rainbow Swiss Chard Gratin

Creamy with just a hint of mustard, this rustic gratin is wonderful served with this week’s multigrain bread.

Ingredients:
1 pound rainbow Swiss chard, with both stems and leaves intact
1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
1¾ cup heavy cream
Grated Parmesan
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Butter, for baking dish

Method:
1. Heat the oven to 350°. Cut the chard leaves from the stems. Chop the stems into short lengths, then cook briefly in boiling, lightly salted water until crisply tender. Remove the stems. Drop the leaves in the boiling water briefly, until they relax. Drain, let cool, and wring out the leaves. Spread the stems and leaves in a buttered shallow ovenproof dish.

2. Put the mustard in a bowl and stir in the cream and a grinding of salt and black pepper. Pour the seasoned cream over the stems and leaves, cover with grated Parmesan, and bake, 35 to 40 minutes, until the top is bubbly and golden brown.

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Roasted Acorn Squash with Grana Cheese

This versatile recipe works with any number of squash—Butternut, Delicata, Acorn or Sweet Dumpling.

Ingredients:
2 Acorn squash, peeled and cut into ¼-inch pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 cup grated Grana-style cheese
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 400°. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Toss the squash with olive oil and kosher salt to taste. Place the squash in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet.

3. Combine the breadcrumbs, cheese, nutmeg, pepper, salt, garlic and thyme in a bowl. Stir to mix well. Sprinkle mixture all over the squash and roast until tender, about 40 minutes. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve warm or at room temperature.

Savory Mushroom Breakfast Strata

This healthy yet decadent-tasting strata is studded with winter squash, mushrooms and tender greens.

Ingredients:
1 bunch hearty greens, such as kale or Swiss chard
½ pound mushrooms, such as baby Shiitake, washed and sliced
½ winter squash, peeled, seeded and diced into 1-inch pieces
½ loaf French bread (preferably stale!), cut into 1-inch-thick slices
1-2 garlic cloves
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, coarsely chopped
½ cup Gruyère cheese, grated
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
4 eggs
2 cups milk
Olive oil
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Bring a medium or large pot of water to a boil, salt generously and add the greens. Cook 2-3 minutes, until tender but still colorful. Transfer to a bowl of cold water, then drain and squeeze out excess water. Chop coarsely and set aside. Cut one of the garlic cloves in half and rub the slices of bread with the cut side. Then mince all of the garlic. Cut the bread into 1-inch squares.

2. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a heavy skillet and add the squash. Cook, stirring often, until it begins to soften, and add the thyme, garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Then add the mushrooms and cook an additional 1-2 minutes, or until the mushrooms are tender and fragrant. Stir in the greens, toss together and remove from the heat.

3. Preheat the oven to 350°. Oil or butter a 2-quart baking dish. In a large bowl, combine the bread cubes, the mushrooms, squash and greens, and the two cheeses and toss together. Transfer to the prepared baking dish.

4. Beat together the eggs and milk. Add salt to taste and a few twists of the pepper mill, and pour over the bread mixture. Let sit for 30 minutes before baking so that the bread can absorb some of the liquid.

5. Place in the oven and bake 40-50 minutes, until puffed and browned. Remove from the oven and serve hot or warm.

Kale Gratin with Parmesan Bread Crumbs

This no-guilt gratin skips the cream, but still boasts big flavor thanks to a topping of toasty bread crumbs.

Ingredients:
2 pounds (about 2 bunches) kale, tough stems removed, leaves chopped
1½ cups fresh whole-wheat sourdough bread crumbs
½ cup grated Grana-style cheese
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
Sea salt

Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 375°.

2. In a bowl, stir together the bread crumbs, cheese and 1 tablespoon of the oil until well-blended.

3. In a large frying pan, warm the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant but not browned, about 1 minute. Add the kale and sprinkle with a healthy dash of salt. Stir until the kale is wilted and coated with oil. Add ¼ cup water, cover and steam until the kale is tender, 6-10 minutes. Transfer to a shallow baking dish and smooth the top. Sprinkle with the bread crumb mixture.

4. Bake until the bread crumbs are golden brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve.

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