Monday, April 26, 2010

Give Bitter Greens a Chance

Bitter greens are something I enjoy from time to time, but I only seem to eat them at restaurants. I can't think of any time when I've cooked them at home (except for throwing a few small pieces of radicchio into a green salad). In this article, the New York Times' Mark Bittman urges people like me to give it a shot:

Like radicchio and other bitter, tough greens, escarole can survive the winter in many places and appear early in spring. But unlike radicchio, escarole is inexpensive. And it's more versatile: it tastes better cooked than does its round, red cousin.

In fact, escarole is at its most appealing when sauteed or braised, as the flavor becomes softer and even a bit buttery. It's especially excellent with loads of garlic ...

The article has a recipe for escarole soup with rice. It would have been nice to see a few other recipes in Bittman's article using bitter greens. This recipe using kale with cannellini beans and pancetta sounds great. And scroll down to the end of this web page for additional recipes.