Random Bag Night – Chard stuffed with lamb & rice

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This one is sort of a comfort food classic for me, even though I am Italian and this is sort of morphed from a Polish recipe for stuffed cabbage called galumpkis. The recipe take a bit of work up front, but its worth it to get to these warm, delicious steaming bundles of comfort. Swiss chard is a favorite vegetable of mine, mostly because you can add it to so many things and get your green leafy vegetable quota without sacrificing flavor. Lamb is something I’m recently acquiring a taste for, but it’s definitely not a protien I eat on a regular basis. And the “sauce” for the stuffed chard bundles could not be any easier ! Here is the recipe:

1 bunch of swiss chard, stems removed

1 lb ground lamb

1 large onion or 1.5 small ones, sliced

1.5 cups of cooked rice – I used basmati

Handful fresh chopped parsley

1 egg

Generous pinch of salt

3-4 tablespoons of olive oil

1 can V8

2 tablespoons white vinegar

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Blanch the chard leaves in some boiling water so that they are pliable (2-3mins). Carmelize onions with a little olive oil and a small pinch of salt until they are nice and brown. In a bowl combine the lamb, cooked onions, rice, parsley, egg and a generous pinch of salt. Mix to combine all the ingredients well.

Take 1 swiss chard leaf, lay it flat on a work surface and take a generous handful of the lamb stuffing and place in the middle of the leaf.

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Roll up the leaf around the filling (like a burrito) and place seam side down in an oiled baking dish. Repeat the process until you’ve used up all the leaves, stuffing or space in the baking dish. The baking dish should be just large enough to fit the chard bundles tightly in a single layer. I used a 9×11 glass baking dish. Pour the can V8 over top of the bundles in the baking dish and add the white vinegar. You may want to add an extra 1/2 can of V8 if you want a little extra sauce. Place the baking dish in the over and cover with tin foil. It should take about 35-40 minutes for the stuffing to cook through.

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