Endive is a leaf vegetable related to the daisy family which can be cooked or used raw in salads. Cultivated from wild forms found in Europe, Asia and North America, endive and chicory come in many varieties and are often confused botanically.
Care and Handling
Ideal Storage Temperature: 32° -36°F. 85-90% relative humidity. Product should be refrigerated, topped with ice, and stored in an area with good air circulation.
- Endive, a relative of the chicory family has a bunchy head with frilly leaves. The pale leaves from the center are mild, while the outer green leaves are slightly bitter. Look for fresh-looking, green heads with a crisp texture.
- Both curly endive and escarole are available year-round, with the peak season from June through October.
- Store curly endive, tightly wrapped, in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- Endive is used mainly in salads, but can also be briefly cooked and eaten as a vegetable or in soups.
Did You Know?
Endive was discovered by accident in 19th century Belgium. Chicory roots abandoned in the dark, warm environment of a cellar became plump and covered with long, yellowish leaves. When tasted, they were found to have good flavor and were subsequently cultivated.