Week Two of our CSA brought more swiss chard, and we still had leftovers from week one, so I focused on finding a new way to cook it. We had plans for the weekend, so I was hoping for something portable and delicious, enter the hand pie. I knew it might be the only way to make sure we ate some greens on a busy day. We had one lone sweet potato in the pantry, so I came up with these flaky hand pies that used two bunches of swiss chard!
Swiss Chard and Sweet Potato Hand Pies
(Makes about 15 – 20 hand pies, takes about 90 – 120 minutes)
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup cold butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons cold water
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1 medium sweet potato
- 2 bunches swiss chard (1.5 – 2 lbs total), stems removed and roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, diced
- 1 t paprika
- 1 t cumin
- 1 t coriander
- 1 egg, beaten
- salt and pepper to taste
Start by making the dough, since it needs to chill. In the food processor, pulse the flour, salt and sugar. Cut the butter into small cubes, then add these to the food processor. Pulse while pouring in the cold water in a slow stream. It will form a very rough and sticky dough. Using a spatula scrape the dough onto a piece of plastic wrap and wrap it up. Shape the plastic-wrapped dough into a rough oval and chill. This should chill at least one hour in the fridge. If you are in a rush, half an hour in the freezer works well. Don’t bother trying to work with this dough when it is not cold or you will have a big mess.
Cook the whole sweet potato until it is softened. I recommend about 6-7 minutes in the microwave, rotating once in the middle. A leftover baked sweet potato would also work. Once the sweet potato is cool enough to handle, peel and chop into 1/2-inch pieces.
Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onion and cook for about 5 minutes until the onion is translucent, stirring occasionally. Add the sweet potato and cook for about 2 minutes. Then add the spices and garlic and stir to combine. Add in the chopped swiss chard and sautee until the chard is wilted about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. I find that chard needs less salt than many other greens, so taste as you go. Remove the mixture from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Once the mixture is cooled, stir in about 1/2 of the beaten egg. Set aside the rest of the egg.
While the chard mixture is cooling, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Split the dough in half. Re-wrap half of the dough and return it to the refrigerator. On a floured surface roll out half of the dough to about 4 mm thick. Cut the dough into squares that measure about 4″ on each side. Place a tablespoon of the chard mixture in the center of each square. Using your finger, moisten the edges with a bit of water and fold over into a triangle. Place the triangles on the baking sheet.
Repeat this process with the other half of the dough. Once all the triangles are made, cut a shallow vent in the top of each with a paring knife. Brush the top of each triangle with the remaining egg.
Bake at 425F for about 30 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy. Remove to a rack to cool. Eat hot or at room temperature.