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Endive: tough, but vulnerable

  1. It is one of the most popular vegetables: endive. Delicious as a stamp, but also tasty as a lettuce. You can boil it, braise it and stir-fry it. Endive is also tasty raw. However, this rough-looking and slightly bitter-tasting leafy vegetable is quite fragile.

  1. Endive (Cichorum endivia) is a robust plant and family of the chicory. Curly endive and frisee are a variation with more curled and split leaves. The common endive has an undivided leaf (no incisions). Because endive consists largely of water, the vegetables wilt quickly. So only buy fresh and sturdy heads. The underside of the stump should also not be brown or damp. It is best to eat endive through the same water as soon as possible after purchase. It can be kept in the refrigerator for about two days. If you blanch the endive and pack it well, you can also store it in the freezer. Calculate about 370-450 grams of raw endive per person to reach the required 250 grams after preparation. Endive is shrinking considerably!


  1. On average, endive contains more minerals than other vegetables. Especially the outer green leaf is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C and minerals. This makes the vegetable healthy for the heart, stomach and liver. Furthermore, endive is said to act as a diuretic and detoxify the liver. It is also said to have a positive effect on the kidneys and brain.


  1. Like spinach and lettuce, endive is a nitrate-rich vegetable. Previously, it was advised not to eat these vegetables more than twice a week. In addition, you were not allowed to heat nitrate-rich vegetables a second time. The harmless nitrate is then converted into the harmful nitrite and carcinogenic nitrosamines can be formed from nitrite. However, recent research has shown that the health risks are very small. The restrictive advice for eating and consumption of nitrate-rich vegetables has therefore been lifted. The Nutrition Center only advises to be careful with nitrate-rich sports supplements.


  1. Endive is available all year round. Only the Dutch version is usually not available in January and February.

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