I’ve grown radicchio on the farm, here’s a tasty recipe in which you cook the radicchio.
200g puy lentils
2 bay leaves
100g manuka honey (i used local honey)
¼ tsp flaked chilli
½ tsp ground turmeric
Salt and black pepper
About 1 tsp water
3 tbsp red-wine vinegar
90ml olive oil
½ medium-size radicchio
60g pecorino fiore sardo, or other mature ewe’s or goat’s cheese
20g each roughly chopped basil, dill and parsley
Heat the oven to 150C/300F/gas mark 2. Put the lentils in a medium saucepan, cover with plenty of water, add the bay leaves and simmer for 15 minutes, until tender.
While the lentils cook, prepare the walnuts. In a bowl, combine half the honey, the chilli, turmeric and a quarter-teaspoon of salt, and add enough water to create a thick paste.
Drain the lentils and return to the pan. Whisk together the vinegar, half the oil, the remaining honey, half a teaspoon of salt and some black pepper until the honey dissolves. Stir into the lentils while they’re still hot, then leave to cool a little. Discard the bay leaves.
Add the walnuts to the honey/chilli paste and stir to coat. Spread on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and roast for 15-20 minutes, stirring once, until crunchy and dry, but still sticky.
Pour the remaining oil into a medium frying pan and place on high heat. Cut the radicchio into eight wedges and place these in the hot oil, sprinkling them with a little salt. Cook for a minute on each side, then transfer into a large bowl.
Add the lentils, walnuts, sliced pecorino and herbs. Stir gently, taste and season accordingly. Serve warmish or at room temperature.