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In Season: Escarole

Everyday Food, January 2009

Turn a New Leaf
A member of the chicory family, escarole may look like a head of romaine, but it's much more flavorful, with thicker leaves and a pale yellow heart. Rich in vitamin A and folate, it's also a good source of fiber. To store escarole, refrigerate in an unsealed plastic bag lined with paper towels for up to four days.

Raw or Cooked
Escarole has a slight, pleasant bitterness balanced by a sweetness. It turns mild, even sweeter, and surprisingly buttery when cooked. Use it in place of spinach: in a salad with apples and nuts or a plain green salad, simmered in an Italian-style soup, wilted for a side dish, or as a bed for steamed salmon fillets.

Recipes
Escarole Salad with Apples and Pecans
Salmon with Escarole and Lemon
Light Italian Wedding Soup

Comments (4)

  • bala82 18 Feb, 2009

    when cooked. Use it in place of spinach: in a salad with apples and nuts or a plain green salad, simmered in an Italian-style soup, wilted for a side dish, or as a bed for steamed salmon fillets.

  • LizHeinrichs 27 Jan, 2009

    I live in Ontario, Canada and we can get escarole easily - along with all sorts of other greens such as chicory / endive (which is not to be confused with witloof or Belgian endive.) I buy escarole often in the winter as it is a better buy than romaine or other kinds of lettuce.
    Maybe if lots of you ask for escarole stores will stock it. Here, enough of us said we wanted Ontario garlic rather than Chinese garlic that we seem to be getting local garlic again.

  • AuntieMHomeplace 27 Jan, 2009

    I recently got this reply from a specialty food store in suburban Denver.
    "Escarole is available, but neither I or the biggest produce wholesaler
    in town has ever seen it in a grocery store - it just doesn't sell, as
    a matter of fact, this is the first request I've ever had.
    delicious, but far from popular with everyone but Chefs who aspire to
    French and Italian technique. It is not in season, but it's always in
    season somewhere....which means it will be expensive. "

  • Kait40 27 Jan, 2009

    Is Escarole also know by another name? I have looked for it in my supermarkets but have had no luck. 90% of the people who work in the produce section don't even know what a parsnip is so chances of them helping are slim to none. :)