This was another comforting dinner recipe made through a necessity to use up a beautiful, fresh bunch of swiss chard from the CSA basket and a visit to Epicurious.
For 2 people you’ll need: 1/2 lb of spaghetti or linguine, 1 head of swiss chard (with stems cut into 1/2″ pieces and leaves roughly chopped into 1/2′ thick strips), 1/2 onion (roughly chopped), 4-5 strips of bacon (cut into 1/2″ sections), 2 cloves garlic (crushed, peeled and chopped), 1/2 c white wine (or chicken broth with 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar), 2 Tbsp parmesan, salt & pepper.
Partially fill a large pot with water and add some salt for the pasta. Place it on the eye and bring to a boil. Once on the boil, add the pasta and cook for 1 min less than the package recommends (usually 10-11 mins).
Meanwhile, heat chopped bacon in a large skillet, stirring well, until it is just browning and crispy – about 5-8 mins. Remove bacon onto a paper towel lined plate for draining. Also drain the skillet of all but 2 Tbsp of bacon grease.
Place the skillet back on medium heat and add the chopped chard stems, garlic and onion. Stir well until just softening – about 3-5mins.
Add chopped chard leaves and the white wine (or chicken stock), increase the heat and toss well as the liquid evaporates (to about 1/3) and the leaves wilt – about 3-4 mins.
Drain pasta but reserve about 1/2-3/4 cup of the liquid.
Add pasta, a little of the past liquid, salt, pepper (and vinegar if you want to increase the “twang”) to the skillet with the chard/bacon/onion mixture. Stir well over medium heat until combined well and pasta is just a step beyond al dente – about 2 mins.
Serve in a large bowl with crusty bread.