Chard and Sweet Potato Pie

  • Author: John Pitblado


Chef John made this now-famous brunch pie during a three-month hiatus from teaching (you might also notice a heavy dose of Scandinavian pastry recipes soon as a result of his sabbatical). The olive oil crust needs only a 30 minute rest, giving you the perfect timing to make the fillings and preheat the oven.



Sweet Potato for Filling

  • 1 Medium yellow or white flesh sweet potato, cut into 1/2” dice
  • 2 Tbsps Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Olive oil crust

  • 11/4 cups All purpose flour
  • 11/4 cups Whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Cold water
  • 3/4 tsp Coarse salt

Pie filling

  • 1/4 cup Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Medium red onion, cut into small dice
  • 4 Garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp Ground cumin
  • 1 tsp Ground coriander
  • 1 Large bunch Swiss chard
  • 3/4 tsp Red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper To taste
  • 1/2 cup Grated Parmigiano
  • 1/2 cup Pine nuts, toasted in a skillet over medium heat
  • 11/2 tsps White vinegar
  • Garnish 1 egg beaten with 1 tsp water, coarse salt and/or Nigella seeds


Sweet Potato for Filling

Preheat oven to 375°
Toss diced sweet potato with 2 tablespoon olive oil and teaspoon salt. Place on baking sheet covered with parchment. Roast about 20 minutes until potatoes are soft and brown on edges. Remove from oven and cool.

Olive oil crust

In a bowl, combine all-purpose and whole wheat pastry flour, extra-virgin olive oil, cold water, and coarse salt. Stir with a fork to combine, then turn out onto a work surface and knead 1 minute or until dough just begins to come together into smooth mass. Cover dough with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

Pie filling

  1. Remove chard leaves from stems. Slice stems about ¼” on a diagonal. Stack leaves and cut into 1” strips.
  2. In a large saute pan, heat oil over medium-high. Add onion and garlic; cook until onion begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Add cumin and coriander to hot oil. Add chopped chard stems and red-pepper flakes; cook until stems begin to soften, about 2 minutes.
  3. Add chard leaves; the leaves should be damp from washing, (this helps the chard cook). Season with salt and pepper. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until chard leaves wilt. Uncover and cook, stirring occasionally, until chard is soft and the liquid has reduced. Mixture should be fairly dry. Place chard mixture in a large bowl and toss with Parmesan, roasted sweet potato, toasted pine nuts, white wine vinegar. Taste and season with salt and pepper and allow to cool.
  4. Divide the dough into 2 pieces, one piece slightly larger than the other, about 2/3 and 1/3 of original ball. Roll the larger piece into about a 12 1/2-inch round; fit into an 8-inch round cake pan (2 inches deep). Fill bottom crust with cooled chard mixture. Roll remaining dough to a 9 1/2-inch round; place over filling. Pinch edges of dough together and tuck in to seal; cut several vents into center of pie. Combine egg with 1 tablespoon water and brush over dough. Sprinkle with black salt or nigella seeds.
  5. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, with rack in lowest position. Bake pie until crust is deep golden brown, about 1 1/2 hours. Serve warm or at room temperature.