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Edible annual leafy plant (Cichorium endivia) of the aster family. It is variously believed to have originated in Egypt and Indonesia, and it has been cultivated in Europe since the 16th century. The many kinds of endive form two groups: the curly or narrow-leaved endive (C. endivia, variety crispa) and the Batavian, or broad-leaved, endive (C. endivia, variety latifolia), which is also called escarole. The former is used mostly for salads, the latter for cooking.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on endive, visit Britannica.com.