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Dark Leafy Greens with Caramelized Onions, Raisins and Maple Walnuts

IngredientsGreens, Walnuts
Menu PartSide Dish
Dark Leafy Greens with Caramelized Onions

Chef Rebecca Katz

Healing Kitchens

San Rafael, Calif.

The most recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend including more fruits and vegetables in our diets. Dark leafy greens like Swiss chard and kale are nutrition powerhouses, packing a lot of nutrients and antioxidants into a very low-calorie food. Chef Rebecca Katz pumps up the taste with caramelized onions and raisins, then adds Omega 3-rich walnuts for an extra flavor and nutrition punch.


2 bunches Swiss chard or kale, rinsed and dried

¼ cup walnuts, chopped

1 tsp. maple syrup

Salt, to taste

2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 red onion, peeled and quartered

1 garlic clove, minced

Pinch red chili flakes

1/3 cup raisins or currants

2 tbsp. water

1 tsp. grated lemon zest


  1. Remove tough stems from chard or kale. (Chard stems, though fibrous, are flavorful and may be saved and used in another dish. Tear chard or kale leaves into 1- to 2-inch pieces to measure 8 cups, lightly packed. Transfer prepared greens to bowl of cold water.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F. In bowl, toss walnuts with maple syrup and pinch of salt. Spread nuts on small baking pan and bake about 10 minutes, stirring once or twice, until nuts are lightly browned and have a toasty fragrance. Cool to room temperature.
  3. In large saute pan or skillet over medium-high heat, heat olive oil. Add onion and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until onion begins to soften. Reduce heat to low; cook slowly, stirring occasionally, 20 minutes or until onions are caramelized (browned in spots and very soft.)
  4. Stir garlic and red chili flakes into onions; stir for 30 seconds or until garlic is aromatic. Add raisins; stir 30 seconds. Add water and stir briskly, loosening any bits from bottom of pan.
  5. Handfuls at a time, lift greens from water bath; add to skillet. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and stir to combine. Bring to a boil and cook over medium heat until greens are tender and liquid has mostly evaporated, about 10 minutes. Stir in lemon zest.
  6. Arrange greens on a plate or in shallow bowl; sprinkle with maple-toasted walnuts.

Photo courtesy of California Walnuts

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