We’re on our way to creating a delicious and surprisingly easy four-course dinner, using some of every guy’s favorite ingredients. Last week it was beer, baked into savory dinner rolls. Today it’s bacon, sautéed with shallots and poured over greens to make a warm salad.
I love this salad for a couple of reasons. First, it really isn’t hard to make, taking less than 15 minutes to prepare completely. Second, it illustrates how different flavors complement and balance each other. The greens in this salad—arugula and radicchio—are peppery and bitter. The cooked bacon and shallots are smoky and sweet. When combined, you have a salad that is unique and sophisticated while only using four main ingredients.
Serving this salad warm—mixing the dressing with the bacon and shallots and tossing it with the greens—just elevates the flavor. This recipes serves two for dinner.
2-3 handfuls baby arugula
1/2 head radicchio, chopped
2 slices thick-cut bacon, diced fine
1 shallot, diced fine (no more than 1/4 cup when diced)
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Roughly tear the arugula leaves and combine them with the chopped radicchio in a salad bowl.
Combine the diced bacon and shallots in a medium pan over medium heat. The rendered fat from the bacon will caramelize the shallots. Cook until the bacon bits are brown; the shallots will be done at this point, too.
Turn off the heat and add the mustard, olive oil and vinegar. Whisk well to combine.
Pour the warm dressing, bacon and shallots over the mixed greens and toss right away. The dressing will slightly wilt some of the greens, but they will stay mostly crunchy. Season with salt and pepper and then serve.