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Potato, Swiss Chard, and Bread Soup

Potato, Swiss Chard, and Bread Soup



Makes 6 servings

3/4 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, rinsed and cut into 1/2-inch slices

Salt
1 small bunch Swiss chard (about 1-1/2 pounds)
1/2 cup diced (1/2-inch) day-old Italian bread without crusts
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 teaspoon crushed hot red pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese

Pour enough cold water over the potatoes in a deep, heavy 4-quart pot to

cover by three fingers. Salt the water lightly and bring to a boil.

Adjust the heat so the water is at a gentle boil and cook the potatoes,

covered, until they are tender but still hold their shape, about 15

minutes.

Meanwhile, strip the chard leaves from the stems. Wash the chard in a

sinkful of cool water, swishing it well and waiting for the dirt to

settle to the bottom of the sink. Scoop the chard out with a wire

skimmer or your hands; drain well in a colander. Cut the chard leaves

into 1 1/2 inch strips and stir them into the water after the potatoes

have been cooking about 5 minutes.

Stir the bread into the pot after the chard has been cooking about 5

minutes. Season the soup with salt and cook until the potatoes and chard

are tender and the bread is falling apart, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a small skillet over low heat. Whack

the garlic cloves with the side of a knife and stir them into the oil.

Sprinkle the crushed red pepper over the oil and cook until the garlic

is golden, about 3 minutes. Scrape the contents of the skillet into the

pot. Stir well. Taste the soup and season with additional salt if you

like. Ladle the soup into warm bowls, and sprinkle some of the grated

cheese over the top of each, or pass a bowl of cheese separately.