Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Mexican Swiss Chard Tacos

Yum. I had the easiest meal to make the other night and it was so delicious. I am Catholic and it is the season of Lent in the Church. Traditionally, Catholics give up something during Lent in order to cultivate and grow in our faith more fully. In the past, I've given up many different things like sweets and watching TV. This year, I have decided to give up meat. Since Lent is forty days I will be a vegetarian until Easter. There really is something to choosing to go without. It does make me feel more awake to the intangible gifts of life or, at least more appreciative of those things I take for granted. Give up anything for forty days, even a week, and you'll start taking notice.

When I go backpacking in the summer I give up all kinds of luxuries so I don't have to carry more and more weight. It is refreshing to not have to put make up on in the mornings and to only think about the necessities of life without the distractions I'm accustomed to. Nature doesn't care about those things. And it makes it that much more rewarding to return home from the trip knowing that the things I've taken for granted are actually gifts. I think this is what Lent is all about. I think this is what life is about. In some ways, purposely living below our means or given up something even just some of the time, is worth it because it leads us to a fuller appreciation of life. On my journey through Lent, I thought I'd share a meatless recipe from an excellent cookbook I have called, "Everyday Mexican". It is full of traditional Mexican recipes from all over the country that are easy to make. Give it a try!

Mexican Swiss Chard Tacos

Red onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large bunch swiss chard leaves, chopped (remove base stems)
1/2 cup vegetable broth
Olive oil
1/4 tsp to 1/2 tsp Red pepper flakes
Corn Tortillas
Queso fresco - or other fresh cheese like feta
Salsa - your favorite

Saute the red onion in oil on medium to high heat for 4-5 minutes or until browned (not burned). Toss in the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 30 seconds. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add the broth and swiss chard and cover. Cook for five minutes. Remove the cover. Stir and cook until the broth evaporates. Serve on tortillas with cheese and salsa.

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