Now there are no forbidden fruits vegetables in my kitchen, and we all love chicory here (endive when you’re in the US), but I think most -and I use the term loosely- people don’t care for the slight bitterness. Such a shame because you can actually use it to your advantage and create a perfect balance between all the flavors.
It’s so much fun to come up with recipes that will make you like those types of food you usually don’t really care for. I ran into this recipe not too long ago, tweaked it and now it’s a great side-dish for me. It’s a real simple recipe with only a few basic ingredients, I like those best, but what I really like is the the incredibly short preparation time.
This is a perfect side recipe to a good roast!
4 medium heads of chicory
1 tbsp orange juice
2 tbsp butter
3 tbsp honey
2 tbsp oil
The chicory, all crunchy, white and yellow and also pretty easy to work with. The bitterness greatly reduced over the years, even my munchkin loves it.
I’ve used 3 heads because that’s all I had in my fridge and it’s pouring here, the recipe will be better if you use 4 of them.
Cut off the end, peel off a few outer leaves, cut the chicory in half length-ways and remove the center core. The core is the most bitter part. If you leave it in, it will become much milder during cooking, though. Give them a quick wash and dab the excess liquid off with a clean towel or a paper towel.
Grab yourself a bowl – I would be lost without my glass bowl collection. Now measure 3 tbsp honey and one tbsp orange juice. You can use fresh or packaged, it doesn’t really matter. I’ve used packaged. Now don’t give me that look! If I’d have to rely on just one tbsp juice for my vitamin C intake, I’d be in trouble. I’m not going out in the pouring rain for 1 tbsp OJ. No no, that ain’t happening! :)
Stir to combine.
Combine 2 tbsp olive oil with 2 tbsp butter and add the honey mix. Turn on the heat. It’s slightly unorthodox (that’s my middle name:) to combine it all at this point, but it really works, trust me! Don’t you just love how you keep seeing different hands and fingers in my photos?
Now get everything sizzling hot.
Plunge in your chicory. Don’t ask me how I took this shot and not broke the focus entirely, pure luck I guess. Those are my hands, btw.
Make sure you coat all the chicory with the honey/butter mix and leave it be for a while, the edges need to caramelize so don’t stir. Cook for 3 minutes over very high heat, then flip them over and cook the other side for 3 minutes.
Sprinkle some thyme, a little salt and pepper to taste and stir to combine. Give them 1 or 2 more minutes until the edges are slightly brown. That’s all, folks.
Serve on a plate and drizzle the honey mix on top – it can be used as a sweet and flavorful gravy. Garnish with a little extra thyme and (if you have it around, which I didn’t) some grated orange zest.
There you go, a quick and tasty side-dish in about 10 to 15 minutes.