Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing
See SAVEUR's recommended Sparkling Wines
The recipe for this traditional salad is based on one in The Fannie Farmer Cookbook (Knopf, 1996) by Marion Cunningham.
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. dijon mustard
6 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
12 strips bacon
1⁄2 lb. fresh spinach (about 1 medium bunch), stemmed,
washed, and dried
6–8 medium white mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and
1 medium shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
2⁄3 cup vegetable oil
2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and coarsely chopped
1. Combine garlic, sugar, mustard, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste in a small bowl and let rest for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, separate strips of bacon, then lay half the bacon in a large skillet in a single layer. Cook over medium heat, turning occasionally, until browned and crisp, 10–15 minutes. Transfer bacon to paper towels to let drain. Repeat with remaining bacon. Pour off all but 2 tbsp. of the bacon grease and set skillet aside.
3. Put spinach, mushrooms, and shallots into a large salad bowl and set aside. Return skillet with rendered bacon grease to medium heat. Stir in oil and lemon–garlic mixture and heat until hot. Pour hot dressing over spinach salad and toss well. Coarsely crumble as much of the cooked bacon as you like and add it to the salad, saving any remaining bacon for another use. Add eggs and toss well again. Adjust seasonings.