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Reinventing Radicchio

Radicchio is a form of chicory and is mainly produced in Italy.  This red-purple leaf veggie has a slightly bitter and spicy flavor that mellows when grilled or roasted.  Radicchio is also beneficial to your health–it is fat free, cholesterol free, very low in sodium, an excellent source of vitamin K, and a good source of vitamin C, folate, and copper. Usually you’ll find this veggie sprinkled into salad mixes, but I’ve got some recipes that really highlight its appeal.


Grilled Radicchio with Balsamic Syrup, Parmesan, and Honey-Roasted Almonds is a simple, yet elegant side dish.  Begin by preparing the balsamic syrup.  Add 1/2 cup good quality balsamic vinegar and 1 tablespoon sugar together in a saucepan.  Heat and simmer until it has reduced to half (1/4 cup) and remove from heat.  Allow to cool completely before using.  Slice your radicchio head into quarters and brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Heat a cast iron grill pan until very hot and add radicchio (cut side down).  Grill for 2-3 minutes per side until leaves have browned slightly.  Repeat on other side and transfer to a platter to slightly cool.  Drizzle balsamic syrup on top and sprinkle on chopped almonds and parmesan before serving.


Courtesy of A Beautiful Plate


Orange Radicchio Salad is a great spring salad you’ll top with a maple vinaigrette.  For your salad you’ll want to combine two heads of radicchio, sliced lengthwise from the base, four medium oranges, peeled and chopped, four green onions, chopped, 1/2 cup toasted pecans, salt and pepper to taste.  To create your maple vinaigrette, combine olive oil, maple syrup, and Dijon mustard.  Super easy and so delicious!


Courtesy of The Healthy Maven


A heartier dish is this Lentil Salad with Roasted Radicchio and Cauliflower.  Begin by roasting your cauliflower in a 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes after drizzling the cut up veggies with olive oil and sprinkling with salt and pepper.  Meanwhile, place lentils, bay leaf, and a pinch of salt in a pot with enough cold water to cover lentils.  Bring to a boil, then simmer 20-30 minutes until lentils are tender.  Place walnuts in a pan and toast over low heat.  Transfer to a cutting board and coarsely chop.  Take half a head of chopped radicchio and add to the cauliflower about 5 minutes before it’s done roasting.  Take the other half of the radicchio and toss with some olive oil in a large bowl.  Make your vinaigrette by finely chopping a few anchovies, then smashing them into a paste.  Combine olive oil, minced shallots, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, lemon juice, honey, and currents.  Drain lentils well and add to the bowl with the dressed radicchio.  Add in the roasted cauliflower and radicchio and 1/4 cup of chopped tarragon, and walnuts.  Add vinaigrette.  Just before serving, crumble goat cheese on top.


Courtesy of Food 52


Stop back next week when I’ll be featuring some healthy Creole recipes.


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