Rick Bayless’ Swiss Chard Tacos with Caramelized Onion, Fresh Cheese and Red Chile

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I have previously mentioned my affection for Rick Bayless stemming from when we enjoyed his restaurants while living in Chicago. Now I have several of his cookbooks. This dish was adapted from his book Mexican Everyday: Easy, Full-Flavored, Tradition-Packed. I would eat these tacos EVERYDAY. Healthy and delicious! We ate them with Frontera Chipotle Salsa (easy and really good) but they would be also be great with the Smoky Tomatillo Salsa I made for enchiladas the other night. We ate them in hard shells- to please my kids (who have become HUGE taco fans!), and had salsa and sour cream to pass at the table. Rice and refried beans were served on the side. In the past I have added cooked, shredded chicken to the greens in the final few minutes of cooking.

  • a 12-ounce bunch Swiss Chard (or collard, mustard, or beet greens), thick lower stems cut off OR 10 ounces cleaned spinach (about 10 cups)
  • 1 1/2 T vegetable oil, olive oil, fresh pork lard or bacon drippings
  • 1 large red onion, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1/2 large sweet onion, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 3-6 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or water
  • salt
  • 1 or 2 cooked chicken thighs, shredded, optional
  • 12 warm corn tortillas, warmed (soft or hard)
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) queso fresco, crumbled or chopped into chunks (feta or goat cheese could be substituted), for serving
  • about 3/4 cup Smoky Chipotle Salsa (Frontera), or Smoky Tomatillo Salsa, or hot sauce, for serving
  • sour cream, for serving
  1. Cut the chard crosswise into 1/2-inch slices (small spinach leaves can be left whole). In a very large (12-inch) skillet, heat the oil (or tis stand-in) over medium high. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until golden brown but still crunchy, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and stir for a few seconds, until aromatic, then add the broth or water, 1/2 teaspoon salt and the greens. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and cook until the greens are almost tender, anywhere from 2 minutes for tender spinach to 7 or 8 minutes for thick collard greens; Swiss chard needs about 5 minutes.
  2. Uncover the pan, raise the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring continually, until the mixture is nearly dry. Taste and season with additional salt if you think necessary. Add the shredded, cooked chicken, if using.
  3. Serve with the warm tortillas, cheese, salsa or hot sauce, and sour cream for making tacos.

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About Josette@thebrookcook

I live in Stony Brook, New York on Long Island. I love garlic and baking. My hobby (and love) is to try new recipes. My favorite recipe resources include The New York Times, Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, and Martha Stewart Living. Enjoy!

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