It takes a bitter green to tackle a cold day. Bitter winter chicories are a salad’s response to the season. Chicories are leafy “greens” that include the likes of radicchio and Treviso, endive and escarole, frisee and puntarelle — all of which are notably not-so-green, but rather streaked in purples and reds or cast in icy whites and yellow-tinged celadon. These are the frigid-weather soldiers that thrive in a leafy salad bowl, inviting equally hardy and robust compatriots to join the mix.
Crunchy nuts, puckery fruit, briny olives and sharp onions are excellent team players in a chicory salad. They face and complement the bitter greens, with each ingredient standing shoulder to shoulder, in balance and not overpowering the salad. Call it a mutual salad treaty.