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How To Grow endive Microgreens (+History, Benefits & Recipes)

How To Grow Endive Microgreens (+History& Health Benefits)

In any micro mix, endive can add an interesting variation. Different textures and contrasts can be produced by endive distinctive leaves form and strong bitter flavor. Endive microgreens are very rich in plant nutrients. Antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals are abundant in them.

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    Endive History

    Endive was first discovered growing wild and was used medicinally, like many other vegetables. The endive was valued by the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans for its liver-stimulating properties.

    Its early cultivation began in England in the middle of the sixteenth century. There are records of endive growing in American gardens by the early nineteenth century, while it is uncertain when endive cultivation started in this country.

    Belgian endive

    Belgian endive

    Today, several different types of endive are grown. Before harvesting, many growers blanch this plant for a few weeks. Its heart becomes “whiter,” resulting in a more sensitive texture and less bitter flavor. Other varieties of endive, including Bianca Riccia, have a bright yellow curly leaf with a mildly bitter flavor and are frequently grown as a “cut-and-come-again” salad item [1]. 

     Endive microgreens overview

    Family Asteraceae
    Recommended Varieties Bianca Riccia
    Nutrition Vitamin A, B, C, E, K, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Zinc, Copper, Manganese, Selenium
    Average days to germinate 3 to 5 days
    Average days to harvest (after germination) 8 to 12 days
    Difficulty Medium

    Endive varieties and cultivars

    Belgian endive, curly endive, and escarole are the three main kinds of endive. Today usually Curly endive is just referred to as “endive,” which sometimes makes it confusing what kind of endive is being discussed [2].

    Belgian endive

    Belgian endive is a small, cylindrical head of lettuce which has pale-yellow leaves gently curled edges. Similar to mushrooms, it is grown slightly beneath the earth in dark rooms to maintain its pale color and delicate flavor. It is moderately bitter.

    red endive (radicchio)

    Red endive (Radicchio)

    Red endive, also referred to as radicchio, is a reddish-hued variety of Belgian endive. The crimson or variegated leaves of radicchio, which belongs to the same species as Belgian endive, making it a favorite for adding color and flavor to salads.

    Curly endive (frisée )

    Curly endive is a bushy head of curly greens with lacy-textured leaves. It is also known as frisée or just chicory. The leaves with a darker shade of green have a stronger flavor that is slightly bitter. It is frequently used in salads to provide taste and texture.

    Curly endive (Frisée)

    Curly endive (Frisée)

    Broad-leafed endive (escarole)

    broad-leaved endive belongs to the same genus and species as Curly endive, which is a distinct variety and is occasionally called escarole. The inner, lighter-colored leaves can be used in salads, and it is less bitter than the other two varieties. The tougher, outer, darker leaves might be more bitter and are best used chopped in cooked meals and soups.

    broad-leaved endive - escarole

    Broad-leaved endive (Escarole)

    Note: Both Curly endive and broad -leafed endive ( escarole) may be grown as microgreens [3].

    Endive microgreens nutrition

    Vitamin A, B1, B2, B3, B4, B9, C, E, K, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Zinc, Copper, Manganese, and Selenium are all present in endive microgreens [4].

    Health benefits of endive microgreens

    Endive microgreen is a low-calorie food that has various health benefits. The following are a few of the most significant health benefits of this microgreen [5]:

    Helps with Weight Loss

    Endive is well-known for aiding in weight loss. Half a cup of endive has a glycemic load of 0. Endive’s low or nonexistent glycemic load is amazing for those with high blood glucose levels. Endive microgreen is unquestionably one of the best options for weight loss because of all of these reasons.

    endive microgreens

    Endive microgreens

    Prevents Diabetes

    Numerous research has been done on the relationship between high-fiber foods like endive and preventing diabetes. Including endive microgreens in your diet is can keep cholesterol and blood sugar low and regulated. This microgreen is rich in polyphenols, which keep blood vessels and arteries flexible.

    Not only that, but endive is an excellent source of vitamin B9 as well! Significantly aids in lowering blood pressure is vitamin B9.

    Good Bowel Movements

    Endive considerably improves the quantity and quality of bowel movements. Many doctors advise people to include extra endive in their meals when they are experiencing constipation!

    Endive is a significant source of fiber, which is necessary for healthy stoma passage. Endive microgreens are high in fiber and help the body eliminate unnecessary nutrients. 

    baked endive

    Healthy Pregnancy

    Many pregnant women have expressed how much easier and smoother their pregnancies were because of endive. Endive is a healthy option to acquire the folic acid you need daily, which is essential for healthy pregnancies.

    Endive microgreens are a great source of vitamin B, which includes folic acid or folate! Folate is highly essential for pregnant women since it guards against numerous types of birth abnormalities. 

    healthy skin

    Endive is not only tasty, but it also works wonders for excellent skincare. Making endive microgreen juice is a fantastic approach to incorporating endive microgreen into your skincare routine. Endive juice has been demonstrated to eliminate blemishes and stop further breakouts.

    A different option would be to apply an endive microgreen mask every two weeks! This will aid in pore closure and skin smoothing. 

    micro endive

    Lessens the Severity of Insomnia

    Endive may be able to assist you if you have insomnia. Over the years, endive has been shown to aid in reducing insomnia. Endive is primarily made up of fiber and has a lot of vitamin C, which helps with sleep.

    Endive can be used in salads or as a garnish for grilled foods. Who knows, perhaps making such a minor adjustment will improve your ability to sleep.

    Improves eyesight

    Endive microgreens are among the microgreens, like carrot microgreens and celery microgreens, that promote the health of the optical system. Endive juices or smoothies are the most typical way to acquire your daily dosage of vision enhancement.

    Detoxes the Liver 

    Endive is a fantastic stimulant for the body to go through the liver’s cleansing process. It balances cholesterol and controls hormones.

    growing curly endive

    How to grow endive microgreens

    It takes 3 to 5 days for the endive to germinate. You can harvest them almost ten days after planting them. The procedure of growing endive microgreens is almost similar to other microgreens. Read the <<Growing Microgreens >> article to learn more about the general method for growing microgreens.

    Endive microgreens Growing Tips 

    Growing tips

    • Endive may grow and germinate under cold temperatures.
    • Growth retardation can result from oversowing.
    • It may be sensitive to pH, so try to keep it below 7.

    how to grow endive microgreens

    Harvesting Tips

    • Endive microgreens do not grow a long stem like other microgreens, so you should harvest them close to the soil.
    • Since the endive microgreens grow so closer to the soil, you might harvest the greens with a lot of dirt on them. Use a smaller pair of scissors and harvest slowly to prevent this.

    Washing Tips

    • In general, you should take your time with this crop. To clean this microgreen, you have to do at least two washes.

    Possible Challenges

    • If endive microgreens are left out in the midday sun during the summer, they may burn. Avoid watering during the middle of the day and keep your greens out of the sun’s direct rays during peak solar intensity to prevent burning.
    • Birds adore endive seeds. Even in the greenhouse, if your endive trays are not covered with lids, the neighborhood songbirds will tear back the paper towels and eat every germination of seed.
    • Maintaining a pH under 7 in your water is beneficial for endive growth.

    If you have ever grown Endive microgreens or would like to try it out, please share your experiences and views in the comments section below.

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