One of my favourite chefs, Francis Mallmann posted about this technique on instagram a few days ago and it got me inspired. We've got so much chard in the garden and this seemed the perfect way to make these big leafy greens taste their best. With fire on iron. It worked out deliciously! I would have cooked this on a fire at the beach, over a piece of iron, but our area is currently under a fire ban, so we barbequed this using a cookie sheet.
12 stalks of chard
1 cup Fior di Latte or cream cheese
salt and pepper
Each roll is made up of 4 chard fronds. Take 2 pairs, and turn the stems toward the centre so the greens of the fronds are the outer edge. Generously cover the stem area of one of the pairs (around 8 inches of coverage) of chard fronds with your cheese, around 3 tablespoons. Salt and pepper the cheese generously. Take the other pair and sandwich the 4 leaves together. Tuck in the tops of the greens (folding them down around 3 inches) then roll it all up so you have a kind of large cigar. Wrap with string.
Heat up your barbeque to around 450 degrees. Cover the cookie sheet with a good quality high smoke point cooking oil. Roll the chard "cigars" in the oil a bit. Place the sheet into the barbeque and close the lid. In 5 minutes, turn the chard rolls and close the lid again for around 5 minutes. This will ensure the stalks of the chard soften enough. keep turning the rolls until you get a good deal of browning. Remove from heat after around 15 minutes.
Remove the strings, keeping the rolls in place on the sheet, then slice them to around 3 inch lengths. Serve and enjoy!
*You could experiment with adding sautéed garlic or onions into the centre with the cheese but I love the purity of flavours of this simple dish, cooked by my favourite method, by fire.