Tagliolini with Swiss Chard, Baby Artichokes, and Pomodorini

Sometimes when I make dinner, it comes out not just close to what I imagined, but actually better!  Tonight was one of those rare nights.

As usual the meal began a few days earlier, with the gathering of ingredients.  On Wednesday I was going into Boston for a celebratory dinner with my good friend, Steve.  En route I stopped at Donelan’s, my local supermarket, for a few items.  The organic Swiss Chard looked fresh and tender, so I bought a bunch there.

Then in Boston, I stopped at Eataly before the dinner to get some of my favorite things there.  I bought 6-7 baby artichokes, young enough to trim and cook whole; a 500 ml. bottle of Ligurian olive oil; a can of cherry tomatoes (pomodorini) on sale for $1.99; a small amount of fresh pasta — tagliolini — which was just enough for the two of us; and several of my favorite pecorino cheeses, including one from Calabria.

Tonight was my turn to cook, so I put it all together to make Tagliolini with Swiss Chard, Baby Artichokes, and Pomodorini.  I made up the recipe as I went.  Using 5 of my favorite stainless steel prep bowls, I proceeded as follows:

  • wash the Swiss Chard very well, trim away the ribs, and slice leaves in 1″ strips
  • finely mince one very large garlic clove
  • dice one medium sized shallot
  • dice a small piece of leftover leek
  • open the tomato can and put the contents in a prep bowl
  • trim the baby artichokes and cut them in half vertically
  • start a full pasta pot with water to a boil
  • using 2 Tbs. of the Ligurian olive oil, heat a nonstick skilled on medium heat
  • add the garlic and cook a few minutes until just tender
  • add the chopped Swiss Chard, plus a little water, cover and turn the heat to medium low, cooking until the chard is tender
  • add 2 Tbs. olive oil to my sautéuse, and sauté the artichoke halves until lightly browned
  • remove the artichokes to a bowl
  • add more olive oil, and cook shallot-leek mixture for 5 minutes; add a little water if it is cooking too fast
  • add some more water (2-3 Tbs.) along with the artichokes, and cook until tender; this is a braise, not pure sauté
  • add the tagliolini to the pasta water, and cook for 3-4 minutes
  • when the artichokes are tender, add all the tomatoes and sauce to the sauté pan
  • after the tomato sauce has thickened a bit, add the pasta to the sauté pan, then add the chard; mix all together and place in a serving bowl from Ravello, on the Amalfi Coast
  • top with grated Calabrian Pecorino, finish with more Ligurian olive oil
  • serve with a 2014 Savuto, my favorite Calabrian wine

What I loved most was how the textures of each vegetable came through clearly in the final dish.  Buon appetito!


This entry was posted in Almost-Vegan, Food, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wine. Bookmark the permalink.

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