Whenever I begin to brainstorm a menu for a party, my mind instantaneously goes to bruschetta. First and foremost, bruschetta is absolutely delicious. It can serve as a base for a multitude of toppings fruits, vegetables, cheese, meat that perfect, flat base is just waiting to be filled up with something tasty. Second, walking, talking and multitasking in general is not a problem when you’ve got a piece of bruschetta in your hand. While you read this it may not seem so
important, but next time you’re mingling while eating, please think of us. Finally, it’s the ideal serving size. Have one or have 12, however many pieces of bruschetta your heart desires, your heart can have.
A little while ago, something tragic happened. I got sick of bruschetta. Yes, I know that I just said it can be served in so many different ways, but I was craving a change something new, something fresh. That’s how I stumbled upon endive cups. Since I believe in full disclosure, I will be honest and let you know that endives are somewhat of a unique taste to acquire. Some people may be put off by their bitterness, but the secret to creating a successful endive cup is to pair it with something sweet. Endive cups earn additional bonus points for being a healthier alternative to bruschetta, serving as a better vessel to fill with toppings and it’s the perfect size to fill up Nature’s Party’s 5 inch. wooden boat (ok we may be biased regarding the last point, but they do make a good match).
Lucky for all of us, the endive has its own website. There you can learn more about endives, where they come from, how they’re grown. You can read the endive’s personal musings on its blogs, and most importantly, you can get some recipe inspiration. Before coming up with the Asian chicken salad endive boat that we created, I browsed through the recipes listed and below are some of my favorites:
● Endive Stuffed with Goat Cheese, Blood Orange and Walnuts
● Endives Spears with Pears and Prosciutto
● Endive Nachos with Black Beans and Feta
Endive Boats with Asian Chicken Salad
● 4 cups shredded cooked chicken
● 1 cup carrots, cut into match sticks
● 1⁄4 cup red onion, minced
● 1⁄4 cup cilantro, chopped
● 1⁄4 cup scallions, thinly sliced
● 1⁄4 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted
● 4 endives, bottoms removed and leaves separated
For the sauce:
● 2 tbsp. sugar
● 1 tsp. salt
● 1⁄2 tsp. pepper
● 3 tbsp. neutral oil (canola or grapeseed)
● 1 tbsp. sesame oil
● 3 tbsp. rice vinegar
1. Combine together all of the dressing ingredients and set aside.
2. Mix together all of the salad ingredients, except for the sliced almonds and endives.
3. Dress the salad thoroughly with dressing. Spoon onto endive leaves and top with
sliced almonds. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.