California Endive Brings Unique Specialty Item to Produce

Thu. April 3rd, 2014
- by Whit Grebitus     

Welcome to Behind the Greens. California Endive Farms, America’s largest grower of endive, is bringing its unique specialty item to produce departments and culinary artists everywhere with its Belles Rouges and California Pearl offerings.
Endive requires a two-step growing process before it is ready to be enjoyed. The first stage takes about 150 days in the field. Born from a Chicory seed, sown in the spring, the plant produces a root the size of a large carrot by fall. Those roots are harvested from the field, cleaned and transported to a cold storage facility where they enter a dormancy period before eventually making their way to dark, humid, “forcing” rooms to produce endives. Control over the initiation of this second growing process allows for the year-round production of endive.
After growing a month in the forcing room the Endives meet the light again and head to the labor intensive process of picking, trimming, and packing by California Endives' experienced staff. Three different sizes of red and white are packed: Extra, Standard and Baby in addition to retailer AND consumer friendly 3 count packs.
As a member of the chicory family, Endive has a crisp texture and a sweet, nutty flavor with a pleasantly mild bitterness — great served raw or cooked. Plus it’s a great source of potassium, folate and complex fibers. Enjoy the year round availability and versatility of this unique vegetable that is so's grown twice! Thank you for watching Behind the Greens.