When I was at the green grocers the other day I saw some endive and thought that would be my first food to try. My only exposure to endives are in the movie Emelie. Do you remember how the shop assistant carefully selects and even listens to each endive before deciding on which ones to give Emelie. It was so endearing.
A little research revealed what a quirky vegetable endive is. It is part of the daisy and chicory family and can be eaten cooked or raw. Endive is a complicated vegetable to grow as it involves a two-step process. First the seeds are grown into a leafy plant with a deep tap root. Then the greens are cut off and the roots dug up and put into storage where they become dormant. Then the root is put in a cold, dark, humid environment and the endive is grown (the pale green and white colouring made sense when I read that). Endive are chock full of vitamins, potassium, and fibre.
I modified a simple recipe so I could fully appreciate the taste of the endive. Here's how I cooked them:
1 small apple
1 tablespoon butter or oil
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup water
salt and pepper
1. trim the stem end and slice 2 endive in half lengthwise
2. place thin peeled apple slices between the layers of leaves
3. place in frying pan cut side down with 1 tablespoon butter or oil and cook for 6 minutes
4. gently turn the endive over, add 1/4 cup chopped walnuts, add 1/4 cup water, season with salt and pepper, cover, and cook for 12-15 minutes
5. uncover and cook until the liquid has evaporated
I liked the endive better the second day when I took it to work for lunch. It does have a slightly bitter taste which the apple helps to offset. I would make it again, but it wasn't a love-at-first-bite kind of food.
Have you tried endive? What was your verdict? Do you like to try new foods?