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WE'RE BAAAAACK!!! Spinach Salad Extraordinaire
Serves 4 (appetizer); 2 (entrée)
Have you been looking for the perfect spinach salad with a slightly warm dressing, oodles of bacon, a few onions and some sliced eggs? I was. Not the new age spinach salads with raspberry vinaigrette to honey-drenched walnuts better suited for an ice cream topping. Nope, I was looking for the established, CLASSIC spinach salad. You know, the one you might find on a steakhouse menu. Imagine a bright pile of baby spinach leaves scattered with slivers of red onion, thinly sliced white mushrooms, perfect rounds of hard-cooked eggs and then, the piece de resistance, tiny bits (or bigger bits) of bacon rendered in a pan to crispy, salty perfection. Yup, that one.
- 4 oz. baby spinach
- 2 large white mushrooms, thinly sliced
- ¼ small or medium red onion, very thinly sliced
- 1-2 large eggs, hard-boiled, chilled, peeled and thinly sliced into “rounds” (directions to hard boil eggs below)
- 4 pieces thick-sliced bacon, (about 4 oz.), finely diced
- 2 Tb red wine vinegar
- ½ tsp honey
- ½ tsp smooth Dijon mustard
- Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Place spinach in a large, wide salad-serving bowl. Scatter the mushrooms, red onion (see below for a different, mellower way to add the onions) and rounds of hard-boiled eggs.
|Nice bed of spinach|
|Rounds of hard boiled eggs|
In a large skillet, fry bacon bits over medium-high heat until they are brown and crisp and have rendered their fat. Use a slotted spoon to scoop them out of the skillet and spread them on a paper towel to drain briefly before sprinkling them over the salad.
|The BEST part! Bacon!|
Pour out all but two tablespoons of hot bacon fat from the skillet. Reheat over medium and quickly whisk in red wine vinegar, honey & Dijon mustard. If you are freaked out by raw onion, you can add it to the dressing at this point for about 10 seconds, which will take some of the bite out. Pour the dressing (and onions) over the entire salad and season with salt and pepper. Toss gently and serve hot. Repeat tomorrow night.
|Adding the dressing|
|And tossed to perfection|
To hard-boil eggs: There are a million approaches out there. I usually place the eggs carefully into a pan, cover them with cool water by 1 inch. Slowly bring the water to a boil over medium heat; when the water has reached a boil, cover and remove from heat. Let sit 12 minutes. Once they are done, plunge them into icy water so that it will stop cooking immediately and also chill quickly.