Endive al Forno

Endive al Forno

Endive is a bitter green that completely changes both it’s texture and flavor when slowly braised. It becomes a tender vegetable with a much more mellow flavor and is a satisfying side dish for such dishes as sauteed fish, roast chicken, or grilled meats. I prefer this vegetable at room temperature, but it is just as delicious hot or even cold.

Serves 6
by Deborah Mele

Six Heads Belgian endive

2 Tablespoons Butter

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

1 Cup Chicken Broth

1 Cup Diced Tomatoes

For The Topping:

1 1/2 Cup Fresh Breadcrumbs

3 Slices Pancetta Finely Chopped

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

Salt & Pepper

4 Tablespoons Fresh Chopped Parsley

1/4 Cup Grated Parmesan

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a large baking dish. Trim the stems off of each head of endive, and cut in half lengthwise. In a large skillet, heat the butter and olive oil and once melted and bubbling, lay the endive cut side down in the pan. Cook for about 4 minutes, turn and cook another 4 minutes. Transfer the endive cut side up into the prepared pan and pour the chicken broth into the pan with the diced tomatoes.

Bake for 20 minutes or until fork tender. Most of the liquid will have been absorbed by the endive as it cooked. In the heavy skillet, cook the pancetta in the olive oil until brown and crisp. Remove from the heat, add the breadcrumbs, cheese, salt and pepper and parsley. Mix well. Sprinkle the topping over the endive and return to the oven until golden brown. Remove and allow to cool to room temperature. Serve.

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