We are back in Prague and trying to get my 1-year-old daughters back into their old routine is slightly challenging. Mainly because they are no longer those two little ten month-olds who were busy crawling around, and happily pulling themselves up on sofas and chairs. Now, they are independently standing on their own two feet and taking baby steps towards walking. There is a lot of falling down, nursing bumps, and chasing around going on in our home. Therefore, I didn’t have my act together to make it to the farmers market, which is just one block away from my home!
However, we did manage to visit our friend K’s home in the village of Tuchomerice, which is just a 20 minute drive from the center of Prague. K has been developing a garden in her yard. Raising a garden in Prague where a variety of fruits and vegetables will grow, can be a challenge due to the country’s climate, but K had a lot of produce thriving in her yard such as tomatoes, corn, squash of all sorts, green beans, rhubarb, mint, lemon balm, sage and chard. All this gave me a case of garden envy.
K gifted me with a lovely bouquet of chard, the red and yellow kind, as well as some stalks of rhubarb and stems of sage. I really like chard and so do my girls, but I often have a hard time getting my hands on it. Sometimes, my local bio shop sells a bunch for 25 crowns and on a few occasions I have seen some at the farmer’s markets, but it hasn’t been a reliable source. When K gave me some to take home, I was especially pleased and I knew exactly what it was going to be used for. You can find out more about K’s garden through her blog: http://sittingonpumpkins.wordpress.com/
This recipe is adapted from one of my favorite vegetarian cookbooks: The New Laurel’s Kitchen. If you can’t find chard, it can easily be substituted with spinach.
2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 onion, chopped
6 cups of steamed or boiled chard, well- drained and chopped
2 cups of cottage cheese (or half ricotta and half cottage)
3/4 cup of shredded swiss cheese or something similar
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup of bread crumbs (whole wheat for a healthier version) or ground almonds or pecans (for our gluten-free friends)
Preheat oven to 350/180 degrees.
Heat oil, when warm add garlic.
When garlic turns slightly golden, add onions and cook until transparent.
In a large bowl beat together the cheese, eggs and salt.
Mix the chard and grated cheese together.
Spread the mixture into a well-greased 8″X8″ pan.
Blend one cup of the cheese mixture into the chard.
Then press it down firmly into the pan.
Spread the remaining cheese mix evenly over the chard.
Then sprinkle with bread crumbs and paprika.
Bake for 30-40 minutes.
Let it sit for 10 minutes before serving with a small plate of chopped ripe tomatoes.