We love our bite size snacks. Chips and dip are a year round staple, along with bread and cheese, celery and peanut butter, and just about anything dipped in hummus. When Brit food contributor Jaymee tried to convince us that the endive is the new hot item for snacking, we were skeptical. We love crisping our kale, turning spinach into dip, but what can you really do with an endive?
Well it turns out, the endive is a natural born vehicle for yumminess. Fill it with any mix of dip, veggies, cheese, or chopped salad, and you’ve got a bite size bit of awesomeness that happens to be low-carb and healthy to boot. Here are 3 recipes that are so delicious, we know you’ll want to endive right in. ;)
First up, Neufchâtel and Smoked Salmon Endive Boats.
- 6 ounces smoked salmon, cut into one-inch pieces
- 8 ounces Neufchâtel (or you can use low fat cream cheese)
- 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
- 2 tablespoons drained, rinsed capers (rule of capers: the smaller, the better)
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, plus sprigs for garnish
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- 2 tablespoons minced red onion (for garnish)
- 30 Belgian endive spears, mix of purple and white (about 3-4 heads)
Why Neufchâtel? Because it’s naturally lower in fat than regular cream cheese. Boom. Why salmon? It’s low in fat and loaded with omega-3 fatty acids. Double boom.
Mix cheese, capers, chopped dill, lemon juice, lemon peel, and horseradish in small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to pastry bag fitted with “star” tip and pipe into endives. (Or you could just spoon mixture into endives).
Sprinkle with onion, lay a piece of salmon over the top and garnish with dill. Serve! (Can be made 2-3 hours ahead of time)
Each endive spear will only cost you 32 calories, 1 gram of carbs, and 2 grams of fat. Healthy snacks for the win!
Next, we’ve got Tuna Salad Endive Crackers.
- 1 can light tuna in water, drained
- 1 tablespoon Lemonaise light
- 1 tablespoon dill relish
- 1 tablespoon chopped red onion
- lime juice
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- endive leaves
Mix up your tuna salad of choice. The ingredients above mix up a bowl that totals 168 calories, 7 grams of fat, and 23 grams of protein. Spoon it into some endive leaves, garnish with some sliced green onion and dill, and serve!
This is great as part of a healthy lunch, but would also work well as an appetizer for a bridal shower or game night.
And finally, Lentil Endive Tacos.
- 1 cup dry lentils
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, diced
- 1 tablespoon chile powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- pinch of cayenne (optional)
- salt, to taste
- 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 heads endive, leaves separated
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 canned adobo chile, diced, plus two teaspoons adobo sauce
- diced tomato
- diced avocado
- shredded cheese
Spread the lentils on a plate and sort out any pebbles or damaged lentils. Rinse in cold water and set aside.
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large sauté pan and add onion. Cook until slightly translucent and add garlic. Cook 60 seconds longer. Add spices and lentils and cook another minute or two. Add broth and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer for about 35-40 minutes, or until lentils are cooked to your liking. Remove lid cook a few minutes longer until most of the water evaporates.
While lentils are cooking, make chipotle sour cream by combining diced chile, sauce and sour cream. Refrigerate until ready to use.
To assemble tacos, spoon lentils into endive leaves and top with tomatoes, avocado, cheese and sour cream.
And there you have it! A trio of totally tasty, super healthy recipes that make the most of the incredible edible endive. What are your favorite healthy appetizers and snacks? Any endive recipes we’ve just gotta try? Leave us a note in the comments below or come find us on Twitter.
Jaymee Sire is an Emmy-award winning television reporter CSN Bay Area. When she isn’t covering a sporting event, her true passion is food. Check out Jaymee’s alphabet-themed food blog, E is for Eat, and be sure to follow her on Twitter & Facebook.