Braised Escarole
Scarola Strascinata

serves: 4

Italians love their dark green vegetables; chicory and escarole are often used in soups and salads, or simply eaten as braised vegetables. The usual recipe is escarola strascinata, or dragged in the pan with garlic and oil. In this rendition, the addition of anchovies and black olives make it more festive, in addition to giving the dish more complexity.

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
3 anchovy fillets
1 large bunch escarole, about 1 pound, leaves trimmed, separated, and washed
¼ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
¼ cup pitted oil-cured black olives


In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and anchovies. Cook and stir until anchovies dissolve, about 2 minutes.

Add whole escarole leaves, with a little water from washing still clinging to them and season with the salt. Stir in the olives. Once the escarole begins to wilt, cover the skillet and cook until escarole is tender, about 8 to 10 minutes. Check occasionally to make sure the pan is not dry, if it is, add a few tablespoons of water and recover.

Once the escarole is wilted and tender, uncover and cook for another minute or 2 to evaporate any excess liquid. Season with salt, keeping in mind that the anchovies and olives contain salt, serve warm.