Radicchio Salad

Radicchio Salad

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A Salad in 5 Haikus

There’s much to be had
If we eat first with our eyes—
No room for dessert

O Radicchio,
Purple as late season plum,
White tendon backbone

Gold potato coins
Like hidden first place medals
If you can find them

The chickpea for scale—
Plant caviar, or a pearl
Among monstrous leaves

Oil wrung from olive
And sweet-tart of balsamic,
Parmesan snowfall

The following is the recipe I used, as found in Phaidon’s Quick and Easy Italian Recipes.


  • 4-5 new potatoes

  • 2 heads radicchio, preferably Treviso

  • scant 1 cup (5 oz/150 g) drained and rinsed, canned garbanzo beans (chickpeas)

  • 2 1/12 oz/65 g Parmesan cheese

  • 6 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

  • salt and pepper


Bring a small saucepan of lightly salted water to a boil, add the potatoes, and simmer for 10 minutes, then drain, cool, and slice into rounds.

Meanwhile, cut the radicchio into large pieces and put into a salad bowl. Add the garbanzo beans (chickpeas) and potatoes.

Shave off some of the Parmesan and set aside for the garnish.

Grate the remaining Parmesan into a bowl. Add the oil, vinegar, and a pinch of salt and whisk to a smooth dressing. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir well. Sprinkle with the Parmesan shavings, season with pepper, and serve.



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