If there is one thing that I love that Italians do beautifully, it’s their vegetable side dishes. Cicoria Ripassata is a vegetable seen on most Roman restaurant menus and it’s usually my go-to when I want something packed full of flavour, but also something that’s a strong distraction to help me avoid the roast potatoes.
Sauteed Roman style chicory is a delicious side dish but you can also find it on pizza or as a filling for panini. You could add it to pasta or also use it to create a tasty frittata. The quantity of chicory is hard to write down in a recipe because I usually just buy a big bunch at the market. The quantity though that I used for this recipe was 750g and it is plenty for 4-6 portions.
CICORIA RIPASSATA Ingredients 750g Chicory 2 tblsp salt 60ml Olive Oil 1 garlic clove, whole 1 small chilli pepper 3 anchovy fillets
Cut the ends of the chicory stalks with a sharp knife. Carefully wash the chicory leaves in the kitchen sink filled with cold water. Place the chicory in a saucepan filled with salted water and bring to the boil. Allow to boil for about 10 minutes and then drain. Leave to cool a little and then squeeze it well so that it loses as much water as possible. Heat the oil in a large frying pan, then add the whole garlic clove, the chopped chilli pepper and the anchovy fillets. Fry together until the anchovy fillets break up and ‘dissolve’ into the oil. When the garlic is golden in color, add the chicory leaves and toss in the pan for about 5 minutes over a high heat ensuring the chicory leaves are covered well with the oil mixture. Remove the garlic clove and serve hot or warm. You can add more salt if you feel it’s necessary but taste the chicory first before doing so.
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