Thursday, March 22, 2012

Swiss chard and feta pie ("chardikopita")

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I have a teenager who loves to cook vegetables. Particularly greens. Give Emery a bunch of kale, a pile of chard, a bag of spinach, and he's a happy boy. He makes Asian greens soup, spinach fried rice, mustard greens with garlic and soy sauce. When our friends around the corner clean out their organic garden and give away trash bags filled with huge chard leaves, Emery is first in line.

As it happened, I was the one who made the chard and feta pie in the picture above. Emery darted in and out of the kitchen, interrupting his homework a little too often to poke his nose into what I was doing. "It's chardikopita!" he said as he watched me add feta and dill to the lightly sauteed chard.

I love this rustic press-in crust. I tell people it's because the olive oil gives the crust a terrific flavor. The truth, however, is that I love this crust because I'm terrible with a rolling pin. Don't tell. It's a feature, not a bug.

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Swiss chard and feta pie
Lightly sauteed greens flavored with onion, dill and feta make a terrific pie filling. I eat this for breakfast, but it makes a nice light supper too.
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup plus 2 tsp olive oil, divided
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large bunch Swiss chard, leaves and stems, roughly chopped (about 8 cups)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped
  • freshly ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.Put the flour in a medium-sized bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together 2/3 cup of the olive oil, the cream, and the salt. Pour the olive oil mixture into the flour and stir together with a fork to make a crumbly dough. If the dough seems too dry to hold together, add water 1 teaspoon at a time until the dough is workable.Tip the dough into a 9-inch pie plate or shallow baking dish. Press the dough over the bottom and up the sides of the baking dish with your fingertips to make the crust. Set aside.In a large saucepan, heat the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium-high heat and saute the onion 4-5 minutes until it's softened. Add the chopped chard and saute a couple of minutes; the chard will wilt and shrink down considerably. When it's just wilted, remove the pan from the heat and pour the chard into the bowl that held the dough mixture - might as well not get another bowl dirty, right?Let the chard cool about 10 minutes, then add the eggs, feta, dill and a good amount of ground pepper. Mix thoroughly. Pour the chard filling into the waiting crust and pop the whole thing in the oven. Bake about 45 minutes, until the pie is set and the top is starting to turn golden. Let cool at least 30 minutes before serving to let things firm up a bit - otherwise the whole thing will collapse when you cut into it.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 8 servings


Dena Testa Bray said...

Looks delish. Gotta love any teen who loves veggies!

Ruth J. Morrison - What's The 411 said...

You are blessed to have a child that loves vegetables! Your recipe sounds wonderful and I love your tagline!

Cathy @ She Paused 4 Thought said...

I am always looking for ideas for swiss chard as my garden is busting with the crazy stuff. Do you think this would work without the crust... more frittata style?

Cut `n Clean Greens said...

Emery is right on in naming this! Love it! Thanks for sharing such a delicious recipe, and new way to use chard. We're thinking our Rainbow Chard would be gorgeous in here. :)

--Your friendly farmers at Cut `n Clean Greens

Erika Kerekes said...

Cathy - yes, I am sure it would, although I might add a few tablespoons of flour to the mixture just to absorb any extra liquid from the greens. And maybe an extra egg.

Monet said...

What a great way to enjoy your greens. Thank you for sharing this swiss chard pie. I adore anything with feta so I know this is a winner! I hope you have a blessed week, my friend.

Preethi said...

I used 0% fat greek yoghurt in the crust instead of the cream. The family loved it and I rejoiced that we have one more delicious way to enjoy chard! Thanks to Emery for a wonderful way to enjoy greens!

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