Chicory is added primarily to salads and salads, but it also tastes stewed or baked. Although it seems fragile and inconspicuous, it is an excellent source of vitamins, potassium, iron, magnesium, copper, zinc and folic acid. In addition, chicory is ideal for people who are slimming, because it has a low caloric value.
Chicory - where to buy?
Chicory is best bought at the fair. You can also get it from supermarkets and smaller shops. When choosing chicory, try to look for the whitest heads as possible - green leaves indicate that the vegetable has become bitter when exposed to light. You should know that chicory is grown in the dark, thanks to which it owes its colour and taste. Only flower heads with a diameter of approx. 3-4 cm and a length of up to 15 cm reach our tables. The smaller the head and the more attached the leaves - the tastier and more pronounced the taste. Wild chicory is green - it looks like lettuce.
Chicory - health properties
It is worth reaching for it, because it contains a lot of valuable ingredients, among others vitamins and minerals like sodium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper, zinc, phosphorus, carotene and vitamins B1, B2, C, folic acid. The delicate note of bitterness palatable in chicory owes its two components to vaccine and lactucopicrin, which additionally stimulates the appetite and has a good effect on the liver, stimulating it to secrete more bile. Chicory has a great health-promoting effect - it affects the formation of red blood cells, improves the digestive tract (improves digestion) and kidneys.
Chicory also affects the beauty - thanks to the beta-carotene content, it improves skin tone, and the vitamin A contained in it works well on the skin - rejuvenating it. Good news for those caring for the chicory is low in calories - one piece of it is only 30 kcal.
Chicory - how to prepare chicory?
Chicory tastes best raw as an addition or as the main ingredient in salads. It goes perfectly with the vinaigrette sauce, as well as nuts, cheese (gorgonzola, goat cheese, parmesan, feta), fruit - apples and pears or cold cuts. It can be a decorative element of the table during a meeting with friends - chicory boats filled with delicacies look very original. This vegetable also works well as an ingredient in casseroles or stewed dishes (e.g. with meat or other vegetables).
Before use, chicory should be rinsed in cold water, cleaned of top leaves and cut a bitter scape. Most often, we eat it raw - in salads. Compact heads are better for baking, but good for salads are looser. The leaves must be firm, crunchy and without a trace of brown spots.
Chicory - recipes for chicory dishes
For an appetizer, you can prepare chicory boats with any filling. See the recipe for tuna boats.
For dinner, we recommend baked chicory wrapped in ham with cheese sauce, and for a light dinner, we suggest a recipe for an easy salad with chicory, apple and walnuts.