Endive can be a pretty controversial ingredient. It's bitterness can cause people to steer clear, but when you pair it with something sweet you have the absolute perfect balance of flavor.
And this sweet crab salad nestled into crunchy, slightly bitter endive makes a really easy and delicious appetizer. Or, add endive to butter lettuce with a larger helping of crab and a glass of chilled rosé for the perfect light Summer lunch.
- 1/2 fennel bulb, trimmed, quartered lengthwise and finely chopped
- 1/2 pound fresh lump crabmeat, picked over for shell fragments
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon finely snipped fresh chives, plus more for garnish
- 1 tablespoon. finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise (or full fat greek yogurt)
- 1 tablespoon crème fraîche or sour cream
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more, to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, plus more, to taste
- 6 large heads Belgian endive
For the crab salad:
In a medium bowl, stir together the fennel, crabmeat, shallot, 1 tablespoon chives, parsley, mayonnaise, crème fraîche, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Taste and adjust the seasonings, depending on what tastes good to you. I usually end up adding more lemon juice to brighten it up.
For the salad:
Trim the root ends from the endive heads and gently separate the endive into individual spears.
Arrange 24 of the largest spears on a platter. Save the smaller ones to add to salad, and store them wrapped in a damp paper towel in your fridge.
Spoon a generous amount of crab salad onto the wide end of each spear.
Garnish with chives and serve immediately.
You can make the salad a couple of hours ahead of time, and also separate the spears. Then assemble right before serving.