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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.

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

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