You know those vegetables that you always pass by in the produce section after a quick glance? They look interesting but you’ve never cooked with them before. They sound like they belong on a menu, not a home kitchen. Endives are one of those vegetables for me. Even the pronounciation- “ondeeves” , screams fancy restaurant.
Interestingly, endives are grown in the dark in order to maintain their pale color. They are in the top 10 in the Whole Foods “Aggregate Nutrient Density Index.” A really important reason to eat more endives, per their namesake website, is that one cup of raw endives a week can reduce the chances of ovarian cancer by 75%.
I was skimming through an old edition of “La Cucina Italiana” when I came across this salad calling for curly endives, the more wild cousin of the elegant belgian endive. I decided to stick with elegance and go with regular endives. I made a couple of other changes including roasting the pine nuts to boost the flavor. In the end, it was still “insalata con uva e pinolo.”