Sunday, February 27

Braise That Endive

I haven't attempted to photograph food until tonight, and I have to say that it's hard to remember to stop and photograph things when you're so darn hungry!

Tonight we made a dish that we've tried a few times, and I am always impressed by the unusual combination of ingredients that compliment one another so well.  I'll start by showing you where the recipe came from: a great cookbook by Celia Brooks Brown entitled New Vegetarian.  

The recipe begins some some major potato peeling for some mashed potatoes with smoked cheddar.  While making the potatoes, cut the endives longways, like this:

Two large endives are braised in butter for about 10 minutes, then lots of other goodies are added:
  • 4 leeks
  • 1 cup of port
  • 1 cup of vegetable stock
  • 1 can of Great Northern beans (the recipe calls for cannelloni beans)
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 bay leaf, red pepper flakes, s&p

All of this cooks down for almost 1/2 an hour, and turns into a sweet, aromatic gravy.  The mashed potatoes hide underneath of the chicory/bean mixture, and it is so strange!... but also savory, hearty, sweet, and extremely satisfying!

Throw it in a bowl, and before you know it, you already started eating and made a mess of the plate before you remembered to take a final photo!  Aw shucks...

Ohhhh well.  The down side to this dish is that it isn't very pretty.  By the time everything cooks down into the port, you can't possibly photograph anything that looks as good as it tastes!

So have you ever tried a dish similar to this? Or anything else that seemed like an unlikely combination? Did you end up loving it or hating it?

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