Creamy Swiss Chard & Green Garlic Pasta

Picnik collage

Despite how obviously creamy and delicious this dish is, it's also healthy.
The recipe is slightly adapted from Smitten Kitchen, she seriously can't go wrong, and the creamed chard is made with mostly whole milk with a little bit of butter and flour as a thickener.

You can certainly have the creamed chard by itself or you can mix in pasta like I did.
I had planned on using orecchiette which I swore I had at home and if you are shopping for this dish I would suggest regular chard as opposed to the colorful variety.

Given the horrible light when the dish was ready I had planned on taking pretty pictures the next morning.
I set some of the creamed chard aside to mix with some orecchiete I would purchase and cook the next day.  Luckily I snapped a few shots of the pasta dish before we ate it because in the morning when I glanced into the fridge I noticed that my chard concoction had turned completely pink.

Like bright, pepto bismol pink with green chunks.  It wasn't pretty but it still tasted darn good.
This is why I suggest buying the regular swiss chard. 

Picnik collage

What started all this was the gorgeous chard and green garlic we received in our CSA box.

Green garlic is actually just young garlic (aka spring garlic) and you can see the garlic forming on the bottom.  Although it definitely has a garlic flavor, it's much milder than the traditional version.

If you don't have green garlic, which you mightn't, feel free to use spring onions, regular onions, green onions, leeks or a little of your regular garlic.  All of these options would be fantastic.

Picnik collage

Creamy Swiss Chard & Green Garlic Pasta

1 lbs Swiss Chard, thick stems removed and leaves sliced, then chopped
3 stalks of green garlic, sliced thinly (from bottom to tender part of the greens)
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (wheat or white)
1 3/4 cup whole milk
1/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1/2 lb pasta of your choice
Salt and pepper to taste

Make sure your chard is chopped up well to avoid any long stringy bits that your little one can choke on.
Rinse the chard and place it, still wet, in a large pot over high heat.
Cover it and cook until just wilted, stirring occasionally.
Pour chard in a colander and allow it to cool.

Start cooking pasta of your choice.
I always reserve a little pasta water just in case I want to thin out the finished dish.

In a small bowl heat the milk over low-medium until warm throughout, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, wipe out your pot, place it back over medium heat and sauté the garlic in the butter until soft.
Add the flour, whisking constantly until thickened.  Make sure there are no lumps.
Add the milk in a steady stream, while whisking constantly until incorporated and the sauce has thickened.  Add the parmesan and mix until melted.
Squeeze any remaining water from the chard and mix it in to the sauce.
Taste and add salt and pepper if desired.

Combine the pasta and chard mixture and serve!

~This can certainly be placed in a food processor and blended to make a very tasty puree!


-Use any kind of pasta or mediterranean couscous
-Try this with greens like spinach or collard greens
-Add fresh herbs at the very end
-Use onions, garlic or leeks interchangeably

Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months

Chard is an excellent source of calcium,  vitamin C, E, B6 & K, fiber, potassium, magnesium, iron, protein, zinc and folic acid.  So good for you.

Milk contains calcium, protein, potassium, phosphorus, vitamins D, B12 & A as well as riboflavin and niacin.

Turkey & Veggie Meatballs


Ages ago a friend of mine asked me about making meat dishes for her little one.
His name is Costner and he's on the I'm a Dandy Baby page, so go look at how adorable he is.

I had these meatballs in mind and I've finally just documented the making of these.
He's probably moved on to Prime Rib by now but these are for him regardless.


The veggies in these make the meatballs very moist and tender which makes them perfect for beginning finger foods.  It's also a fantastic way to sneak in vegetables for kids reluctant to eat them.

I used the grating blade in my food processor for these but if you really need to hide the vegetables from unsuspecting kids (or husbands and wives) then go one step further and grind them up with a regular blade as well.

Picnik collage

Turkey & Veggie Meatballs

1 1/2 lbs lean ground turkey
1 large zucchini, grated (about 2 cups)
1 large carrot, grated (about 2 cups)
2 large mushrooms, grated (about 2 cups)
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3/4 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 grated parmesan cheese
1/2 cup bread crumbs (I used italian seasoned)
1 beaten egg
2 + 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
pinch of salt and pepper (optional)

Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium to high heat.
Sauté the onions for a few minutes and then add your carrots and garlic.
Stirring occasionally, cook until they start to soften.
Add in your zucchini and mushroom, give it a good stir and sauté until all the ingredients have softened.
Set aside to cool.

In a large bowl, add your turkey, cheeses, bread crumbs, egg, s&p and cooled vegetables.
Mix it all up with your hands.

Clean out your large pan and get it nice and hot again.

I used a cookie scoop for my meatballs but you could use a spoon.
Brown your meatballs in 2 teaspoons of evoo.
You might have to do this in batches depending on your pan/meatball size.

At this point you can cook them all the way through or you could simmer in some sauce (which I did).

After browning your meatballs, add them all back to the pan and pour in 1 jar of pasta sauce
or if you feel it's just too much flavor for your little you could add a can of plain tomato sauce as well.

Simmer for about 20 minutes until your meatballs are cooked through.

Serve by themselves or with pasta.


Peanut immediately goes through and eats all of his meatballs.
He devours these meatballs.
I devour these meatballs.
B devours these meatballs.

Did anyone notice that I'm letting Peanut eat rotini and meatballs with pasta sauce....
in a white t-shirt.
What was I thinking?


-Use any meat or combination of meats such as chicken or beef
-Use this to make turkey burgers, swedish meatballs or meatloaf
-Add fresh herbs

Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
I immediately froze half the batch after making.

Turkey is a great source of protein as well as niacin, vitamin, B6 and tryptothan which is an amino acid.

Carrots have lots of carotenioids that work as antioxidants, convert to vitamin A, boost the immune system and protect and enhance your eyes and sight.

Zucchini is high in potassium, vitamin, A, beta-carotene, lutein and magazine.

Mushrooms are a rich source of potassium, riboflavin, niacin and selenium.

Cheese is a great source of calcium, magnesium, zinc, folate, selenium and vitamins A, E, K and D.
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