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Belgian Endive ideas?

I was craving it, I bought it, and now I'm having a mental block re what to do with it. I have fond memories of eating crab salad in the little leaf boats, but I don't really have anything to float in a boat. I'm concerned that the endive chopped by itself in a salad will be too bitter, without anything to balance it out. Maybe if I chop up the endive and toss in some parmesan shavings? All ideas are appreciated!

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  1. I love endive in a salad with apples, walnuts and blue cheese. Recently made a roasted pear salad with endives, toasted hazelnuts and blue cheese.


    4 Replies
    1. re: MMRuth

      That looks beautiful. The endive is a backdrop, and it looks like you've used a second lettuce for the salad itself. Can you paraphrase the dressing? Is it just a vinagrette?

      1. re: sasha1

        There's some arugula in it as well. I'll paraphrase the whole recipe for you later when I have more time. But the dressing is six roasted pear wedges (pear cut into eighths), mashed. Combine 1 T diced shallots, add to 2.5 T sherry vinegar, 2 T rice vinegar and 3/4 tsp salt - let sit for 5 minutes. Whisk in 1/4 cup hazelnut oil and 1/2 cup grapeseed oil, then add pear puree.

        1. re: MMRuth

          that sounds absolutely aMAZing! MMRuth, where was that recipe in the salad dressing thread??? Perhaps I should start a new one with favorite salad recipes?

          1. re: linguafood

            It's from Goin's Sunday Suppers at Lucques. Will try to post the whole recipe tomorrow.

    2. This is one of my favorite winter salads: Belgian Endive with mandarine oranges(from the can, but rinse of the sugary syrup).

      Dressing: walnut oil, lemon juice, s&p, some dill and/or parsley, sour cream. The sweetness of the mandarines makes up for the bitterness of the endive, and the sour cream lemony dressing just makes it all come together.... now I want this for dinner!

      1. My idea is to not buy it anymore.

        I have given this premium expensive vegetable all the time and effort it is going to get from me. it never comes out worth the energy or expense.

        Try baking it with cream and parm, then dress it with bacon.

        1 Reply
        1. re: FrankJBN

          Whoa, don't be hatin' ;-). I am actually pretty surprised how Belgian Endive is considered a delicacy in the U.S., and priced accordingly. In Germany, not only is it called chicoree, but it is also on the cheap side.

          Another idea: braise it with butter, lemon juice, salt & lots of fresh ground (need I mention that even?) black pepper till soft. Nice side dish.

        2. I realize you want to prepare it with what you have on hand but I couldn't resist mentioning one of my all time favorite things to eat. Years ago my sister and I went to the Sherry-Netherlands Hotel in Manhatten every day we were there for lunch, about a month, to eat their endive and beet salad with a simple oil and vinegar dressing. The flavors were a match made in heaven.

          1. Slice it and brise it with a ham & cheese sauce, very tasty with mashed potatoes and meatballs. That's how it's being eaten in Holland.... Just like Linguiafood said, not a delicacy in Holland either, just nice wintery comfort food. and yes, very cheap! was surprised when I saw how expensive it actually is in the US.
            Als nice as a salad with mango and a light vinaigrette....

            1. Get creative with your fillings and displays ... http://bluekitchen.files.wordpress.co...

              I'd alternate the display with treviso to add a splash of color ... http://images.jupiterimages.com/commo...

              1. Thanks for the ideas everyone. I tried a braise last night, with some butter, garlic, and a little turkey stock (I have so much turkey stock!). It was ok, but I probably won't repeat. I thought the braise might mellow out the endive a bit, as a braise does for fennel. It didn't really - so I think the sharp bitter kick would probably go better cold and crunchy. I'm looking forward to trying the salad suggestions, especially with the roasted pear puree.

                4 Replies
                1. re: sasha1

                  Are you sure you cooked it long enough? When I've done this (I'll try to remember where the recipe is) they become wonderful and carmelized etc.

                  1. re: MMRuth

                    I didn't caramelize it. I just let it sit in the pan with some butter for a couple of minutes and then put the liquid in. It cooked in the liquid about 10 minutes. It was soft, but not mellow flavored...

                    1. re: sasha1

                      Well, I think 10 minutes isn't long enough. And you won't get entirely rid of the bitterness -- that's just how the stuff tastes. But it really mellows out the bitterness if you braise it until really tender. I usually start off with, yeah, browning it a bit in the butter first, and then adding lots of fresh lemon juice and black pepper. Total cooking time is probably more like 25 minutes, but again, you'll notice when it gets all soft on ya. Thanks to all this talk about it now I crave that dish, and will have to make it over the wkend. Either braised or as a raw salad with mandarin oranges...

                      1. re: linguafood

                        I agree w/ you about the braising time - sasha - I'll dig up a recipe I used for you.

                2. Sasha -- I have made it with shrimp salad (yes, "boats"), and I have also brushed with olive oil and grilled, along with some radicchio. In the summer (I know, out of season) I do really enjoy these lettuces grilled as an unusual side.

                  For winter, this weekend I'm going to try Ana Sortun's endive salad in Spice: endive with matchsticks of apples, a few seedless red grapes cut in half, fresh parsley, mint, and dill, dressed simply with oo, salt, pepper, lemon juice. She serves the salad with endive standing up on a little disc of labne (yogurt cheese) mixed with toasted pecans, garlic, and breadcrumbs. Each leaf cups some of the apple/herb mixture. Sprinkle with some sumac and more toasty pecans. I can't wait to try it. Maybe I just like bitter flavors, but I enjoy endive.

                  1. I make an endive, parmesan, walnut appetizer from epicurious that people rave about and always ask for the recipe.


                    The only change I make is to use preshredded parm instead of cutting into matchsticks. Delicious, easy and light.

                    1. Here's a link to a rave review of Braised Endive with Prosciutto from Molly Stevens All About Braising:


                      And here's a paraphrase of the recipe:

                      6 to 9 Belgian endive
                      3 tablespoons butter
                      4 thin slices prosciutto cut into 1-inch-wide strips
                      salt & pepper
                      1/2 cup chicken stock
                      1/4 to 1/3 cup heavy cream

                      Preheat oven to 375. Butter a 9 X 13 baking dish. Trim endive and cut in half. Brown endive, cut side down, in 2 tablespoons butter (about 4 minutes). Turn and brown other side (about 2 minutes). (May have to do this in two batches.) Transfer to baking dish, cut side up. Endive should fit snugly in a singly layer.

                      Add prosciutto to butter remaining in skillet and turn to coat. Tuck prosciutto between and over endive; sprinkle with s&p. Add stock to skillet, bring to a boil, scrape pan to loosen browned bits, and pour stock over endive.

                      Cover dish with foil and cook until tender, about 30 to 35 minutes. Remove foil, baste endive, and braise, uncovered, another 8 to 10 minutes until pan juices almost completely evaporate. Add heavy cream and bake until cream takes on a caramel color--about 6 minutes. Spoon pan drippings over endive and serve warm or at room temp.

                      1. I recently made grilled endive quarters stuffed with blue cheese between the leaves, then wrapped in prosciutto, and brushed with a bit of olive oil and sherry. We cooked it on an indoor grill contraption my friend had. Carefully attended broiling would probably work too. Grilling the endive made its taste milder, the Cabrales blue cheese stood up to it, and anything in the bacon vein is always tasty in my book.

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