After almost five years of marriage you really think you know someone.
Then there’s that eventual fateful day when you innocently set a salad in front of them and a MINOR FREAKOUT ensues because they didn’t know that one of the ingredients (endive, in this case) was an entity that even existed in this world. Ten minutes of consoling and fifteen minutes of frantic googling later and I *think* Mike was finally convinced that, not only does endive actually exist, but it is actually edible.
What can I say? Life, and marriage, can be full of surprises.
Also surprising? How much we loved this salad despite someone’s initial protests.
I am always hesitant to serve bitter leafy things like endive to Mike because he is so sensitive to their bitter flavor. (Maybe that’s why he had no idea that endive was even a thing.)
BUT there was really something magical about the combination of flavors and textures in this salad, which comes from Alison Roman’s Dining In cookbook, such that the bitterness was softened and appealing as opposed to abrasive. There’s sweet tartness from the apple, a surprising freshness from the mint, tang from the lemon dressing, and saltiness from the almonds. It really has a little bit of everything and that’s exactly what makes it so good. Make sure to serve it all in one day or only toss together as much as you need because the herbs do start to wilt and become less appealing once they’ve been left to sit for a while in the lemon juice.
- ½ cup roasted almonds, chopped
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 endives, ends trimmed, quartered lengthwise and leaves separated
- 1 large tart apple, such as Pink lady or honeycrisp, cored and thinly sliced crosswise
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 1 cup fresh parsley, leaves and tender stems
- ½ cup mint leaves
- 2 tbsp lemon juice, plus more to taste
- Mix together the almonds and olive oil in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, toss together the endives, apple slices, shallot, parsley, mint, and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt, black pepper, and lemon juice.
- Place the salad mixture on a large serving platter or divide among 4 bowls. Top with the salted almonds and serve immediately.