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Braised Escarole and Apples

Braised bitter greens are something I grew up eating. Italians appreciate the delicacy of bitter greens more than any other culture I know. But adding the apples to this dish adds a touch of sweetness that makes for a unique vegan side dish. 


extra virgin olive oil
2-3 cloves fresh garlic, thinly sliced
1 red onion, thin half moon slices
sea salt
generous pinch crushed red pepper flakes
2 medium heads escarole, rinsed well, quartered lengthwise
dry white wine
2-3 sweet apples, diced (do not peel)
2 tablespoons Suzanne's Specialties brown rice syrup
juice of 1/2 lemon

Place a small amount of oil, garlic and onion in a deep skillet and turn heat to medium. When the onions begin to sizzle, add a pinch of salt and red pepper flakes and saute for 2-3 minutes. Spread the onions evenly over the bottom of the skillet and lay escarole on top. Sprinkle lightly with salt and add enough white wine to just cover the bottom of the skillet. Cover and cook until escarole begins to brown, 15-20 minutes.

While the escarole cooks, place apples in a saucepan with a pinch of salt and rice syrup. Turn heat to medium-low and cook, stirring constantly, until rice syrup melts and coats the apples, about 3 minutes. The apples will still be crisp. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. 

Transfer braised escarole to a serving platter and top with cooked onions. Spoon apples over top and serve. 

Makes 4-8 servings.  


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