Escarole and Lentil Salad

Serves 4

Escarole is a sturdy chicory with a slightly bitter taste. It holds up well as a salad because the leaves do not wilt. Team it with protein-rich lentils for a meal in a bowl.


2 cups chicken broth

½ cup lentils

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

¼ cup chopped ham

Juice and zest of 1 large lemon

1 clove garlic, minced

1 large shallot, minced

Salt and pepper, to taste

6 cups torn escarole leaves

2 heads Belgian endive, shredded

1 cup torn radicchio leaves

½ cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese 


1. Pour the broth into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil; stir in the lentils and bring the broth back to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, cover, and cook the lentils until tender and most of the broth has been absorbed. Drain and transfer the lentils to a bowl. Mix with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Set aside.

2. Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in a small sauté pan; add the ham and cook until crispy. Set aside.

3. Whisk the remaining olive oil with the lemon juice, zest, garlic and shallots. Add salt and pepper to taste.

4. Place the lettuces in a bowl. Add the lentils and toss with the dressing.

5. Sprinkle the salad with the ham and cheese. Toss gently before serving.

More of Mary Ann Esposito's recipes you may be interested in

Cuccidatu (Sicilian Fig Cookies)

Makes 2 dozen

Sicilian Chocolate Cookies from Modica

Makes 5 1/2 dozen

Mom’s Date Bar Cookies

Makes 16 bars

Sicilian Chocolate Spice Cookies

Makes about 28 large cookies

Mom’s Dried Cherry Cookies

Makes 4 1/2 to 5 dozen, depending on the size of your cookie cutter; you can make more by making these cookies mini-size.
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