Fried slices of prosciutto provide a crisp contrast to sauteed escarole.
Yield: serves 4
- Kosher salt, to taste
- 2 large heads escarole or chicory, tough outer leaves discarded, inner leaves roughly chopped
- 5 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 thin slices prosciutto, serra, or country ham, torn into strips
- 2 oz. finely chopped cooked ham (any variety will do)
- 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1⁄2 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- Bring an 8-qt. pot of salted water to a boil. Add escarole; cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain escarole, reserving ¼ cup cooking liquid; transfer to a bowl. Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a 12″ skillet over high heat. Add prosciutto strips; cook, flipping once, until crisp, about 1 minute. Use a slotted spoon to transfer prosciutto to paper towels; set aside. Add cooked ham to skillet; cook, stirring, until browned, about 5 minutes. Add reserved cooking liquid and scrape up any browned bits. Pour liquid into a bowl; set aside.
- Heat the skillet over medium-high heat, add the remaining olive oil along with the garlic and the chiles, and cook for 30 seconds. Add the escarole, reserved ham, and cooking liquid and cook until hot, 2-3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the lemon juice. Garnish the escarole with the prosciutto.