Chard Poopers

They make it nice in Nice.
Breathtaking view of the Côte d'Azur from the Anantara Plaza Nice Hotel; lush evergreens and pine trees crowd a garden strip before the sparkling sea, like a Dufy painting come to life
Image: Laurie Woolever

by Laurie Woolever

I dislike Swiss chard. It’s a visually-stunning vegetable, all canary-yellow and magenta stems contrasting with the green-black ruffle of leaves, but it tastes like wet dirt served on a basement floor.

A riot of shiny, vividly colored bunches of Swiss chard, with glossy, thickly veined green leaves and rainbow stems bunched in rubber bands
Alex from Ithaca, NY [CC BY 2.0] via Wikimedia Commons

My feelings about Swiss chard are not facts, and not universally shared.

“The Niçois are so famous for their love of swiss chard,” writes Rosa Jackson in her forthcoming cookbook, Niçoise, that at one point in their history “they became known as caga blea, ‘chard poopers,’ in the local language.” (Jackson’s book also has a recipe for pointy-ended gnocchi called merda de can, or “dog turd.”) 

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