This is a pretty classic preparation that I am able to make even on a weeknight. I work full time and have two small children - SO - if the instructions look labor intensive, just remember that you need not be a superperson to make this! I think it is elegant enough to serve at a dinner party or in larger quantities for the holidays. —Michelle_SF
For the greens
greens (swiss chard, kale or beet greens would work well)
Preheat oven to 400 and preheat your saute pan on medium-low heat. Microwave your 1 cup of stock on the 'beverage' setting so that it is warm-hot.
Microwave your 1 cup of stock on the 'beverage' setting so that it is warm-hot. After warming, add the cream to the stock and stir. Set aside.
Remove leaves from stems and roughly chop. (If using swiss chard, dice the stems as well.)
Add olive oil to your saute pan, and saute onions (and swiss chard stems if using) until translucent. Add a bit of salt and pepper now.Add your greens to the pan and cook until wilted. You don't need to cook them down too long as you will be baking them. While your greens are wilting, prepare the bechamel.
In a saucepan, melt the butter. Once it is melted, add the flour and whisk. Let it cook a bit, but do not let it brown.
Add your liquid (stock/cream combo) and whisk vigorously. Add salt, pepper and freshly ground nutmeg. Let it come to a boil to thicken (but do continue to boil).
Put the cooked greens and onions in a gratin dish. Pour the bechamel on top.
At this point you can add fresh breadcrumbs, or grated gruyere or nothing at all. I prefer breadcrumbs made in a food processor with fresh herbs, garlic and parmesan cheese.
Bake the gratin in the oven (put it on a cookie sheet in case of overflow), uncovered, for 15-20 minutes, until the gratin is bubbly and the topping is brown.