Recipe: Robert Lustig's Greens and Barley Gratin

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Serves 6

Serving Size: One 2-by-2-inch square

Active Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour

This is a great brunch or potluck dish. It keeps well and tastes good at room temperature.


2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup peeled and chopped yellow onion

4 large cloves garlic, peeled and sliced

3 cups Swiss chard, beet greens, spinach, or kale, washed and dried, ribs removed, chopped and set aside

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, or ½ teaspoon dried thyme)

1 teaspoon cracked black pepper

3 eggs, beaten

½ cup half-and-half or whole milk

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 cup cooked barley or brown rice

½ cup (about 2 ounces) grated Gruyère cheese

2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Step 1: Preheat oven to 375° F.

Step 2: Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, chopped chard ribs, and a pinch of salt. Sauté just until the garlic becomes fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Do not overcook the garlic, it will become bitter.

Step 3: Stir in the chopped greens and thyme and toss together. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.

Step 4: In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, and Dijon mustard. Add salt and cracked pepper. Stir in the cooked greens mixture, the barley, and cheese. Mix well.

Step 5: Grease a 2-quart gratin dish, or shallow baking dish, with oil or cooking spray. Scrape the mixture from the bowl into dish and bake it in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until sizzling and lightly browned on the top and sides. Remove from the oven. Allow to sit for at least 10 minutes before serving.

This recipe can be multiplied.


• Use kale and brown rice


• Roasted chicken or turkey

• Pickled beets

• Salad

• Roasted leg of lamb

• Berry compote (p. 130) with yogurt

Per serving: Calories 200, Calories from Fat 100, Total Fat 12g (18% DV), Saturated Fat 4g (20% DV), Trans Fat 0g, Cholesterol 105mg (35% DV), Sodium 700mg (29% DV), Carbohydrates 16g (5% DV), Dietary Fiber 4g (16% DV), Sugars 3g, Added Sugars: 0g, Protein 10g, Vitamin A 120%, Vitamin C 35%, Calcium 25%, Iron 15%.


Hudson Street Press, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, a Penguin Random House Company., from The Fat Chance Cookbook by Dr. Robert Lustig. Copyright © 2013 by Dr. Robert Lustig