Just the appearance of a bunch of silverbeet radiates clues to its goodness. The squeaky, glossy generous foliage spells out in no uncertain terms, the abundance of goodness it contains. Alive with little packets of chloroplasts, the bunch almost seems to vibrate before your eyes.
Silverbeet is a pleasure to grow in the vegetable patch. Looking lustrous and leafy, the gardener’s horticultural self-esteem is given a hefty boost. Stalks can be sliced off at will, without the need to remove the entire plant leaving an ugly bald spot behind. New leaves will continue to sprout and according to ‘silverbeet experts’ these are the finest for culinary purposes. I let mine over grow for effect.
This week, a large bunch was harvested and sent across to a willing neighbour. To my delight, this is what we received in return, still warm.
While the crop is plentiful, it’s nice to seek out new ways to incorporate silverbeet into our weekly intake. This year, I happened upon this simple soup, which is light enough for lunch in the warmer weather.
1 onion finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
3 rashers of bacon, diced
bunch of silverbeet, stems removed and greenery shredded
1 litre chicken stock
salt and pepper to season
- Heat oil in large pot and gently fry off onion, garlic, ginger and bacon until cooked through.
- Add silverbeet and cook down for about 5-10 minutes until wilted.
- Pour over chicken stock and bring to the boil. Turn heat down and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Puree with stick blender.
- Season with salt and pepper.