Friday, 26 April 2013

The Superhero

Swiss chard is a bit of an unsung superhero in the vegetable world, but it's a star in my books.

For starters, it's a nutritional dynamo - just look at these Daily Nutritional Value (DRV) percentages found in 175 grams:

vitamin K = 716%
vitamin A = 214%
vitamin C = 53%

There aren't many vegetables that can make those claims. Plus, Swiss chard comes in a rainbow variety of colours - red, yellow, orange, white, even pink!

Unfortunately, Swiss chard has a few things working against it.

First of all, the stalks are sometimes enormous and unwieldy. Young, small chard leaves can be eaten whole, but the stems of larger chard can be tough so I prefer to separate them from the leaves before eating.

Also, Swiss chard is slightly bitter compared to milder greens like spinach. Some people are turned off by the taste of raw chard in salads, and most recipes use chard as a cooking green.

I prefer to buck the trend. I used raw Swiss chard in this smoothie to show that even stronger flavoured greens can be delicious when mixed with the right combination of ingredients.

The Superhero is aptly named not only because of the Swiss chard, but also because of the mega energy boost you'll feel after drinking one.

Almond milk, peanut butter, banana, maple syrup and rolled oats, plus the goodness of chard will keep you feeling fueled and satiated for hours.

What's not to love?


The Superhero

Prep time: 5 minutes

Makes 1 large (14 oz) smoothie or two small (7 oz) smoothies


Ingredients:

3/4 c. almond milk
1/4 c. rolled oats
1 tsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. peanut butter
1 frozen banana
3 ice cubes
1 c. Swiss chard leaves (approx. 3 stalks)


Directions:

1. Add all ingredients to a blender and mix.

The Superhero will prevail!