The Endive Gala at Oru

by Victoria on June 23, 2010

Endive Gala

Did you know that the average Canadian only eats 6 endive leaves per year (yes, leaves)?  In comparison, in Europe, the average person will eat approximately 10 whole endives over the same time period.   There are both a yellow and red variety available, and once they turn green,  it’s advised to not eat them anymore as they have gone off.  Who knew?

These are some of the many facts that I learned while at the Endive Gala last night at the Fairmont Pacific Rim’s Oru Restaurant, with Celebrity Chef Ned Bell.

With Celebrity Chef Ned Bell

There was a variety of food prepared with endive (also known as witloof) by Oru’s David Wong, including duck, kobe sliders and ice cream to name just a few.  Oru’s mixologist even created a signature endive martini!

I have definitely found all sorts of new uses for this unique Belgian vegetable, grown locally in Western Canada by Van Eekelen Enterprises.

Endive Salad

Duck, Endive and Cherries

Kobe Beef Sliders with Endive

Endive Ice Cream with Blackberries

Endive Ice Cream with Blackberries

Along with our tastings, there were several VQA wines available from Chandra Estates.

Chandra Estate Wines

Chandra Estate Wines

So if you haven’t tried any yet (or even if you have and would like to find out more), check out Ned Bell and his online cooking videos, recipes, and everything endive at

BC Belgian Endive is available at several retailers, including Save on Foods, Price Smart, Thrifty Foods, IGA Marketplace, Choices and Urban Fare.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Jonathan June 23, 2010 at 3:32 pm

Nice post! Wikipedia says, “Endive is rich in many vitamins and minerals, especially in folate and vitamins A and K, and is high in fiber.”

I love the bitterness of endives… it is good to be reminded to use them! I think I will call it witloof from now on.

Teresa June 24, 2010 at 9:29 pm

*faint* you met Ned Bell! one of many chef crushes. The night and food look amazing. Endives are so good just in salads too. Or just have goat cheese on it instead of using crackers

Nicole June 27, 2010 at 4:56 pm

wow that’s a really neat fact about Canadians and endives, I had no idea! But I like how they incorporated endives into various types of dishes (including dessert!) I always love when places use ‘savoury’ type foods or foods not typically found in desserts, in desserts because it really demonstrates their creative ability to do so. I love endive salads though, but after reading that fact, I really do only have endives once a year, if at all haha, great post!

Mijune August 14, 2010 at 12:44 pm

Wow. I am so jealous. That endive leaf ice cream looks amazing!! You know, I don’t even think I eat 6 leaves a year. It’s just so uncommon in Asian cuisine. It’s not even used in many European restaurants in Vancouver let alone American/Canadian restaurants.

Looks like a fun night Victoria!

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