Swiss Chard and Spinach Balls

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Timing and planning is everything when you get a CSA box. You need to plan out the menu, check your summer schedule and let everybody in your family know when they will be expected to dinner. If not, you run the risk of still having vegetables when the next delivery arrives and therefore, allowing your refrigerator explode.

Well, call me a fool. I handled the first CSA box of the year well, but didn’t allow for a little side trip to Costco and an after-volleyball gathering. I don’t usually buy fruits and veggies from Costco, but yesterday I just couldn’t pass on the four pounds of garlic and two huge bags of limes and lemons. Max was with me eyeing strawberries, white peaches, melons and grapes – not organic, but lovely and fresh. Not thinking about space in the fridge, I yielded. Well, needless to say, our very large fridge is at maximum capacity. To top it off, the volleyball team stopped by after the game, so Jeff stocked up on beer. His normal trip to the liquor store involves two varieties of beer, but last night he wanted to please, so three varieties were shoved into every available nook and cranny of our already overweight icebox. And…today is Thursday…CSA delivery day! I’m starting off on the wrong end of things here!

My original menu for the first CSA included three meals: the Bahn Mi Sandwich with pickled vegetables, Greens and Beans, and then the Curried Vegetables. I ended up adding another menu item as I had left over swiss chard. Knowing that the volleyballers would be over, I decided on an appetizer of swiss chard and spinach balls. They were tasty and would have been fabulous with a little soy ginger sauce for dipping. I didn’t include a dipping sauce, but would next time.

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Swiss Chard and Spinach Balls

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 4-5 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 inch ginger, chopped
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • splash of red wine vinegar to deglaze
  • 1 large bunch swiss chard, chopped
  • 1/2 pound spinach
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese
  • 2 cups crushed bread crumbs
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 3 eggs

Directions:

In a large skillet, heat the oil and saute the onions. I like to cook onions slowly to carmelize. When they begin to brown add the chopped garlic and ginger. Stir these until they become frangrant and just begin to brown. Deglaze the pan with a splash of red wine venegar. Add the swiss chard first and mix in with garlic, ginger and onions. Let this cook until it wilts then add spinach. Mix this into the other ingredients and stir until wilted. Toss in the pepper flakes. Turn greens out into a mixing bowl and refrigerate until cool. When the greens have cooled stir in the parmesan, bread crumbs and eggs. When everything is mixed well, they are ready to form into balls and bake.  I made the balls about an inch and a half in diameter, put them on a canola-greased cookie sheet, and baked them at 400 degrees for 1/2 an hour. They really were easy to make and were a great appetizer for our gathering. Spinach always stays in the teeth, so these should be served amongst friends!

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