Color Blade Endive Spears

Posted on: Monday, January 14, 2013

This past week, we decided to take a stroll down the Rose Kennedy Greenway to the ‘Color Commons Opening.’ From afar, we say rods of color blinking among the Financial District skyline and as we reached the Rings Fountain, realized the illuminated blades were part of the temporary art installation. Upon arrival, the team behind the New American Public Art (NAPA) revealed a phone number that allowed fellow park goers to digitally change the colors of the Light Blades by texting a specific number. We excitedly started texting "cyan,” "myrtle,” and "chartreuse” and watched as the colors changed around us.

With flashes of illuminated hues in our heads, we incorporated the vision into an appetizer back at our apartment. We decided to experiment with Belgian Endive which has a unique, mellow flavor and sleek, attractive shape. After breaking apart the bulbs, we used the light and crisp leaves as vessels for tangy marinated beets, sweet apples, crunchy walnuts and smooth goat cheese. The medley of garnet matchsticks atop the pale green blades made for an elegant 3-bite hors d'oeuvres.
Endives Blades with Matchstick Beets, Apples, Walnuts and Goat Cheese

2 small beetroots, scrubbed with stems removed (keep the greens to sautee later!)
2 T EVOO, plus 1 t for roasting the beets
1 Gala apple
2 T red wine vinegar

3/4 c walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped
4 Belgian Endive bulbs
4 oz goat cheese
2 T finely chopped flat leaf parsley
salt and pepper throughout

Preheat the oven 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the beets in a baking pan, drizzle with 1 t EVOO and sprinkle with salt. Cover with foil. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until fork tender. Remove the beets from the pan and set aside to cool completely.

Once cooled, peel and grate the beets on a large holed box grater.

In a large bowl, whisk together the EVOO, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Add the beets to the bowl and toss. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

After the beets have marinated for 30 minutes, cut the apple into 1/8-inch matchsticks, and add them to the bowl. Add the toasted walnuts and stir. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Trim the bottom from the Belgian Endive bulbs and separate the leaves. Fill the lower 1/3 of each leaf with 1/2 t of goat cheese, then 1 t of the beet mixture and a sprinkling of parsley. Arrange the blades on a platter to serve. Makes about 24 blades.


  1. This sounds absolutely wonderful -- except that no matter how much I want to like goat cheese, I don't. Can you recommend a good substitute? I often use feta instead but not sure the consistency would work here. Thank you!

  2. We always love using feta but recommend a cheese that can spread for this appetizer. A nice substitute would be Mascarpone, Crème fraîche or even cream cheese.


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