Looking at the surrounding pristine countryside of Sicily from the belvedere in Enna gives one a sense of why this city was envied for its invincible location high atop a mountain perch. On Enna's street corners are peddlers with cartfuls of broccolo (cauliflower) for purchase. Long as a baseball bat, zucchine lunge (long zucchini) is available too, as are creamy white, tight heads of Belgian endive.
The Ennese make a wonderful salad using endive, pomegranate seeds, and blood orange segments. The pomegranates and oranges are very refreshing with a sweet-tart flavor. Since pomegranates are not available year-round, I buy them in season, extract the seeds, and freeze them. That way I can enjoy the salad all year long; it is particularly attractive at Christmastime. If you cannot find blood oranges, use navel oranges instead.
1/2 pound (about 4 small) Belgian endive, washed
1 rib celery, washed and cut into thin slices
6 Cerigonola olives in brine, pitted and cut into slices
2 blood or navel oranges, peeled and cut into segments
1 tablespoon capers in salt, rinsed and diced (optional)
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
3 tablespoons Filippo Berio Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Cut the endive in half lengthwise, then cut each half in half and separate the leaves from the stem. Place the leaves in a salad bowl and add the celery, olives, oranges, and capers (if used).
To prepare the dressing, in a bowl whisk the lemon juice, salt, and sugar together. Slowly pour the olive oil into the lemon mixture, whisking until the mixture thickens a bit and is smooth.
Pour the dressing over the salad and toss. Sprinkle on the pomegranate seeds and serve.
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