Swiss Chard Mezze with harissa

Most of the Moroccan Jews I know, including my mother and siblings, would never ever make any Shabbat or holiday dishes on a weekday, and vice versa. My mother, for example, would never make matbucha, a spicy tomato jam, or baba ganoush on a weekday, or roasted chicken for Shabbat’s meal. Never.

Not only that, she wouldn’t dare break this tradition, she would raise her brows and call me ma’abula, crazy, if I do it. She is always appalled by my chutzpah to make her Shabbat’s spicy fish dish on a Tuesday evening.

This spicy chard is one of the appetizers my mother makes every Friday night for Shabbat’s dinner. I, on the other hand, make it whenever I have a vibrant bunch of leafy green, usually for a late breakfast over toast. Think beans on toast, but ten times better.

Keep in mind that the leaves SHRINK a lot! To make about 1 serving, use at least 5 large leaves. It works well with almost any leafy greens – kale, collard greens, beet leaves.

You can buy or make your own harissa — it’s easy to make and you can control the spiciness.


Swiss Chard With Harissa

Spicy and earthy mezze to eat over bread or as a side.
Course: Appetizer, Lunch, Mezze
Cuisine: Moroccan
Diet: Vegan
Keyword: Gluten-Free, salad
Servings: 2
Author: Shelly


  • 1 bunch Swiss chard or kale or both (if using kale, remove the spines)
  • 1 – 2 tablespoon mild harissa - Taste the harissa before you add it
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • Salt

In case you don’t have harissa

  • Combine all the ingredients below in a small bowl or jar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • ½ teaspoon hot paprika or ground cayenne pepper (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • Salt


  • Soak the Swiss chard in cold water for a few minutes to remove sand and drain. Stack the leaves in a pile and cut them into 1″ inch wide. Put them in a large skillet or wok with 2-3 tablespoons water and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, until all the liquid is evaporated.
  • Add the harissa or dressing to the skillet and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring continuously until the leaves are coated in harissa or dressing. Add lemon juice, remove from heat, and serve as is or over toast.

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  1. נראה מעולה שלי. גם אני ממש בעניין של קייל לאחרונה – היום אנסה להכין את האריסה שלך ואז מחר לצהריים את המנה. הבלוג שלך מהממם אז מטיילת בו קצת עכשיו.. (:

    • Sigal, I still didn’t put the hebrew stickers on my keyboard, so forgive me that I respond in english. First of all I didn’t know there is kale in Israel, I guess now there is literally everything in our small country. Second, THANK YOU for your support and your firgun (there is no word for that in english – baduk). And thank you for the compliments. I have a feeling I can learn a lot from you xx

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