3 witlof, about 200 grams each
good knob of butter
2 cloves garlic, crushed
zest and juice 1 large orange
½ cup white wine
freshly grated nutmeg
2 sprigs thyme
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1/3 cup hazelnuts, roasted and roughly chopped
100 grams prosciutto
small handful of rocket
Parmesan cheese for grating
Preheat the oven to 200˚C.
Cut the witlof in half through the root. Heat the butter in a large ovenproof sauté pan and brown the witlof on both sides. Combine the garlic, orange juice, zest and white wine and pour over the witlof. Season with freshly grated nutmeg, sea salt and freshly ground pepper and top with the thyme.
Place a piece of crumpled baking paper over the witlof then cover tightly with a lid or aluminium foil. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn the witlof over and bake uncovered for another 5 minutes until golden and lightly caramelized and the pan juices are syrupy. Cool.
To serve: Transfer the witlof to a serving platter and sprinkle with the hazelnuts. Place the prosciutto alongside and scatter over the rocket and shaved Parmesan.
Witlof: also known as Belgian or French endive or chicory. Grown without light, witlof has a small, elongated head of cream coloured, bitter leaves – the darker the leaves the more bitter they will be. Look for crisp, tight heads with pale, creamy yellow tips and store wrapped in paper in the fridge.