Monday, November 12, 2007
I was heading to the far corner of the vegetable garden to cut the last dahlia of the season -- a bright red blossom I'd spotted from the kitchen window -- when I found this gorgeous radicchio tucked among the kale plants. It perfectly illustrates Anna del Conte's description of this variety: "a beautiful cabbage rose ...flecked with magenta spots -- as if from the brush of Jackson Pollock."
In all honesty, my radicchio recipe repertoire is severely limited. Nine times out of ten I julienne the leaves and toss them with crushed garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar and crumbled blue or feta cheese. The tenth time I rough-tear a few leaves to add a slightly bitter undernote to a mix of sweeter lettuces.
But this weekend I discovered a terrific new (to me) use for radicchio: slivered angel-hair thin and piled onto bruschettas spread with a mash of white beans, garlic and great olive oil. A plate of these plus a flute of well-chilled Prosecco reminded me once again that Ruth Rogers and Rose Gray of London's River Cafe are geniuses. If you don't own every single one of their books, your Italian cookbook collection is sadly incomplete.
Posted by Casey at 9:59 PM