Erin, this one was almost just for you.
As I was prepping meals for the week yesterday, it occurred to me that there are several kinds of cooks – those that cook because they need to eat, but get no real pleasure out of the process, those that enjoy the routine of cooking and coming up with something tasty to eat, and those that like experimentation with cooking – the trying different things and seeing what does and doesn’t work. When I mentioned to Bob that I like the experiment part of cooking best,he was not surprised. Apparently having a family with scientists in it means experimenting is in my genetic makeup. I would be offended by this, but really he is probably right.
That is a long set up for this week’s posts, but I spent a good portion of yesterday prepping meals for this week. (I know it is going to be a long week but I want to eat!). I liked making things I knew would work, but when I got to the experiments, the meals that were not direct from a recipe and I had not made before, I got really excited and happy. The same feeling I use to get when running or swimming (for the very brief time I swam as exercise). It just felt good.
Tonight’s meal was a meatless, grainless pie. A savory pie … A chard and feta pie. I got a beautiful bunch of rainbow chard in my veggie basket this week and wanted something different to do with it. I searched and searched and finally found a chard and feta tart recipe. Good start, but Bob is back on no grains (or as little as I can do) and I don’t have any more flour in the house after the holiday baking madness. So … I took the concept and changed it.
Erin, I know you are not a huge fan of ricotta, which forms the base of this, but if you had a crust I think you could substitute cottage cheese for the ricotta. So … One bunch of chard, chopped and wilted in a pan with olive oil. Add some onion and garlic (I didn’t measure here) and cook until the chard is wilted and the onions soft. Drain for about 3 minutes just to get all the liquid out.
In a separate bowl, combine one container of ricotta (or cottage cheese) and three eggs. I used two and it needed one more. Add the zest of one lemon, and mix. Fold feta cheese (about a third of a cup, maybe a little more) and the chard mix into the cheese. Pour into a pie plate (or tart pan with a crust) and bake at 350 for a half hour to forty minutes. Make sure the internal temperature is 160 or higher due to the eggs. Let rest for five minutes, slice and serve.
I liked this one. It did need salt after cooking as I didn’t add any to it prior because I was unsure of the saltiness of the feta. I thought an additional egg (hence the use three) and some seasoning would really improve the dish. But for an experiment, and a meatless, grainless one, it worked.