Escarole is one of my favorite greens. I like the pale, yellow center leaves that are surrounded by lush green outer leaves. I’m not sure why, but it seems escarole does not enjoy quite the same popularity here in the States as in Europe. There, it makes its way to the table in numerous ways. You can often find it tossed into salads with other slightly bitter greens like endive, frisée and radicchio; gently braised with butter or olive oil; or cooked with beans in a soup, both allowing its slight bitterness to mellow out. And so, you’re left with a delicate green that has the sweetness of ice berg lettuce but the texture of young napa cabbage.
To make this salad, pan-sear and cook the boudin blanc (I used German weisswurst – a similar type of sausage from Alexander Hornung). Slice the sausage and toss with escarole and toasted pine nuts. Serve with a red wine vinaigrette that is heavy on dijon mustard.