Day 24 – Cooking with my Daughter

Posted April 25th, 2011 in Grains, Meatless, Recipes by Rebecca Lane

Walnuts, Swiss Chard & Port-Salute cheese with Noodles

Today is a very special day. For the first time in recent memory (we used to bake together often when she was younger), my teenager suggested that she make supper tonight. Who ever heard of such a thing?

And to make it even more exciting, she went exploring online and came up with a recipe that we made. Now, I’m going to come up with some suggestions to make it even better.

The original recipe came from Saveur but we’re adapting it.

Walnuts, Red Swiss Chard and Port-Salute Cheese on Soba Noodles
Serves 4

1 cup shelledwalnut pieces – with spices and maple syrup

  • 1/4 cup chili powder
    2 Tbsp sea salt
    1 Tbsp ground cumin
    1 Tbsp paprika
    1 Tbsp coriander
    1 Tbsp pepper
    1 tsp cinnamon
  • Mix the spices together and keep – makes enough for 5 batches of the roasted nuts
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • Roast walnuts in a single layer (on parchment paper) on a cookie sheet at 300°F for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with spice mixture and maple syrup. Stir thoroughly. Return to hot oven and let absorb liquid and dry the nuts – another 10 minutes.

1 bunch red swiss chard
2 Tbsp walnut oil
2 shallots, peeled and minced
3 large cloves garlic, peeled and minced
Zest of one lemon (save a little for garnish)
1/4 cup vegetable stock
Dulse and Freshly ground black pepper
8 oz Soba Noodles
4 oz Port-Salute cheese or other semi-soft cheese cut up into bits (you will need to refrigerate it in order to cut it up)

Trim swiss chard leaves, discarding tough stems. Chop coarsley and set aside.

Heat walnut oil in a medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add shallots and garlic and cook until shallots are soft, stirring occasionally – about 7 minutes. Add the vegetable stock, lemon zest and swiss chard, season with dulse and pepper – cover and allow to wilt – about 5 minutes.

At the same time, cook the soba noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water for 8 minutes. Drain and return to pot. Stir in cheese and walnuts.

To serve, put pasta on a platter with the swiss chard, garlic and shallots on top. Garnish with a few of the toasted, spiced walnuts on top along with  lemon zest.

The Port-Salute cheese is very creamy and quiet. You could use any other semisoft cheese that you have on hand – one with more flavour might be nice to compliment the bitterness of the swiss chard.

I use the nut spice for walnuts and more often pecans. I keep the spiced nuts for a week in a mason jar – they don’t seem to last longer than that as they can be added to spice up a salad, a noodle bowl, pad thai – you name it, they make it taste better. At Christmas, you can even make up jars as presents for your friends.