My Mom's Belgian Endive


Do you know what Belgian endive is? Most of the time when I see them in a recipe, they're used in a salad, or as a base for a hors d'ouevres. Well, foodies, take note! If you like veggies in general, and cabbage or brussels sprouts in particular, you ought to try endive my Momma's way. And remember I made no promises about fat or calories or....
(allow two endive per person as a side-dish) Choose similarly-sized endive, as white and crisp as you can find.
Preheat oven to 400. Trim the brown ends and any discolored leaves from the endive. Steam or parboil the whole endives for 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
Roll each endive in heavy cream (melted butter works, too) and then in a mixture of seasoned dry breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese and pepper. Lay coated endive in a baking dish. Sprinkle more of the crumb mixture over the top and drizzle with left over cream or butter. Bake at 400 until brown and fragrant and tender. They keep their shape very well, and look beautiful as a side dish for a fancy dinner.
I can eat myself absolutely sick on these things, and have. I hope you'll try them; maybe you'll enjoy them, too. They're also good sprinkled with a few crispy bacon bits on top. By the way, if I'm in a hurry, jonesing for endive, sometimes I cheat. Slice them into pieces, crosswise. Saute in melted butter (start the solid bits of the ends a while before you throw in the leaf pieces) When they're almost finished, sprinkle them with the bread crumb mixture right in the pan and crisp it up that way. Not as pretty by mighty tasty.