Pan-Seared Radicchio With Soft Cheese
Is there a vegetable more perfectly sized for two people than a single head of radicchio? Not much bigger than a softball and wonderfully bitter, radicchio tastes otherworldly when seared briefly in a skillet, gaining a roasted kale-like savoriness while maintaining most of its crunch. A funky, strong-flavored soft cheese like Camembert or taleggio melts gloriously in the hot pan and, with a bit of sherry vinegar and honey, creates a makeshift dressing. This easy but luxurious recipe proves that you don’t need much for a stellar appetizer: just a pan, a few ingredients and a hunk of crusty bread to sop up the salty, bittersweet juices.
- Serves: 2 persons
- 1head radicchio (8 to 10 ounces)
- 2tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and black pepper
- 4ounces Camembert, Brie or taleggio cheese, cut into wedges or large chunks
- 1tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 1tablespoon honey
- Crusty bread, for serving
Step 1Quarter the radicchio head lengthwise and slice the hard white core off of each piece, then cut each quarter in half crosswise. Don’t separate the leaves.
Step 2Heat a large skillet over medium-high. Add the oil and carefully nestle the chopped radicchio into the pan, leaving it alone to sear on one side until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir for a few seconds. The radicchio leaves may separate and start to smell like roasted broccoli or kale. Immediately remove the pan from the heat so the leaves don’t wilt too much. Season with salt and pepper.
Step 3Add the cheese, placing some pieces directly over the radicchio and others in the empty spots of the pan. The cheese will start to melt and bulge slightly. Drizzle the vinegar and honey evenly over the radicchio and cheese, and finish with a final sprinkling of salt, if you’d like.
Step 4Serve right in the pan with crusty bread for dipping into the melty cheese and pan juices.