Radicchio and Red Onion Salad

Dressed With An Anchovy-Garlic Vinaigrette

Radicchio and Red Onion Salad

Dressed With An Anchovy-Garlic Vinaigrette

Many Roman restaurants regularly offer a salad that's made with the stalks of a local chicory called puntarella that's been dressed with a robust anchovy and garlic vinaigrette. In the US, puntarella is very hard to find and its season is short. But you can get an almost authentic Roman taste by making the salad with shreds of radicchio, another member of the chicory family.

The two chicories may not look alike, but once dressed with the hearty garlic and anchovy dressing, you'll almost think you're sitting at a trattoria on the Corso.



  1. Remove any outer leaves from the radicchio that may be dirty or damaged. Cut off the base of the stem and slice the radicchio in half. Cut out what remains of the stem and with a chef's knife, slice the radicchio into thick slices, about one-inch each. Your goal is produce about 4 to 5 cups of shreds of the red leaves. Place in a salad bowl.
  2. Peel and cut the onion in half. Cut the onion into thin slices, slice the onion into thin slices, enough to produce about 3/4 cup. Toss with the radicchio.
  3. Drizzle about 1/2 cup of the garlic-anchovy dressing and toss to coat.
  4. Serve immediately.

Garlic-Anchovy Vinaigrette

2 garlic cloves
4 anchovy fillets (if salt packed, rinse and dry; if packed in oil, drain them)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper

  1. Mince the garlic as finely as you can.  Pile up the little pieces and sprinkle with a pinch of salt.  Using the edge and the side of a chef's knife, rub the salt into the tiny garlic pieces to grind and crush it into a paste.  This will take a few passes in which you'll press against the garlic and then shape it back into a little pile and grind it down again.  Transfer the garlic paste into a small bowl.
  2. Cut the anchovy fillets into tiny pieces.  Add to the bowl with the garlic.
  3. Add about 6 grinds of black pepper.  No more salt should be needed because the anchovies will be salty.
  4. Add the red wine vinegar and with a fork, mix to combine.
  5. Drizzle in the olive oil, whisking with the fork to combine.

You can make this vinaigrette in advance and store refrigerated for about one day.  Just before adding to the salad mixture, make sure to re-whisk it so that the ingredients re-combine.




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