Tardivo radicchio is an Italian heirloom variety known as Fiori d'Inverno, which is Italian for "winter flower?. Tardivo radicchio has unique, long and slender burgundy leaves with white ribs that are oftentimes tinged with lime green. Its unique shape and coloring is achieved through a forcing growth technique which takes place after their initial harvest. Tardivo radicchio has crisp leaves that are somewhat splayed out like fingers. Tardivo Radicchio offers a strong bitter flavor.
The crisp texture and bitter flavor of the Tardivo radicchio is often served as a side dish, roasted or grilled and drizzled with olive oil. The ?late? radicchio of Treviso can be added to risotto, red sauces and stews or baked into a strudel or quiche. The crisp leaves are also eaten raw, much like Belgain endive. Its flavor and texture marry well with citrus segments, fruity olive oil, tomato, vinegar, bacon, olives, garlic, shallots, Asiago and Gruyere cheeses, polenta and Cognac. Tardivo radicchio is best kept wrapped in plastic in the refrigerator and consumed within two weeks.