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Eating veggie » Recipes » Pear and Chicory Bites with a Crispy Rye Crumb

Pear and Chicory Bites with a Crispy Rye Crumb

Prep time 15 mins, cook time 25 mins

Serves 6-8

Wheat-Free, Nut-Free

These quick and easy, party savoury bites are really colourful with mixed chicory leaves. Rye bread has a lot of flavours which makes it ideal for the breadcrumb sprinkle. Add the pear, dill and pickle for a satisfying combination.


For the pickle

  • 1 tsp caraway seeds
  • 25ml boiling water
  • 40g caster sugar
  • ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 100ml cider vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1 small cucumber thinly sliced
  • 1 banana shallot thinly sliced

for the breadcrumb topping

  • 30g unsalted butter (*or hard vegan margarine)
  • 1 heaped tsp caster sugar
  • 200g (3 slices) rye bread, cut or torn into small chunks
  • 1 tsp sea salt flakes or ½ tsp fine sea salt

for the dressing

  • 1 tsp black onion seeds
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 75g mayonnaise or vegan mayonnaise*
  • 150g thick Greek yogurt or Oatly crème fraîche*
  • 1 clove garlic crushed
  • ¼ tsp coarsely ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley

to serve

  • chicory heads (or similiar sized little gem lettuce)
  • 2 Comice pears, halved, cored, sliced and tossed in lemon juice
  • A few extra dill sprigs, for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4.
  2. To make the pickle: In a frying pan, toast the caraway seeds over a medium heat for about 1 minute, tossing the pan regularly to help prevent them from burning. Put the seeds in a heatproof jug and pour over 25ml of boiling water. Add the sugar and salt. Stir well until the sugar and salt have dissolved.
  3. Add the vinegar and mix well. Add the cucumber and banana shallot, pressing down with a spoon to ensure they all get coated in the vinegar mixture. Leave for at least 20 minutes. The pickle can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  4. To make the breadcrumbs: In a small pan, melt the butter and sugar over a low heat. Add the bread chunks and salt. Using a wooden spoon, mix the bread chunks into the butter thoroughly to ensure they are all coated evenly.
  5. Spread the mixture out onto a baking tray and bake for 15-20 minutes. Shake the pan, to turn the croutons, 2-3 times during cooking to ensure even browning. Transfer to a food processor and pulse until roughly crushed to make breadcrumbs.
  6. To make the dressing: In a frying pan, toast the black onion seeds over a medium heat for about 1 minute, tossing regularly to avoid burning. In a medium bowl, add the toasted seeds with the oil, mayonnaise, Greek yogurt or Oatly crème fraîche, garlic, pepper, chopped dill and parsley. Mix with a whisk until smooth. Season to taste. The dressing will keep in a jar in the fridge for 2-3 days.
  7. To assemble: Trim the stalk and separate the chicory leaves. Once the big outer leaves have been removed, finely shred the small centre pieces and any broken outer leaves. Add the shredded pieces to the bowl with the dressing. Mix well.
  8. Place the leaves onto a serving plate or board. Add 2 tsp of the pickle and 2 tsp of the dressing onto each chicory leaf, top with a slice of pear, some breadcrumbs and a sprig of dill for garnish. Serve any spare breadcrumbs in a small ramekin on the side.

Nutrition per serving

351 kcal
















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