A traditional spinach salad with bacon, hard-cooked eggs, mushrooms. Such a classic and ever so satisfying. Plus bonus: a great way to use leftover Easter eggs.
a blush of color, and the red buds thicken
the ends of the maple's branches and everything
is poised before the start of a new world,
which is really the same world
just moving forward from bud
to flower to blossom to fruit
to harvest to sweet sleep, and the roots
await the next signal
Spring eased into Missouri some time in the past weeks, overnight, it must have been, since on no one day was its arrival a certainty. In the local paper, the letters to the editor take on this new season’s controversy, whether chickens, especially the crowing roosters, make good neighbors.
More families, it seems, are putting chicken coops in the back yard. To some, this is an unwelcome intrusion in suburban tranquility. To others, it’s a pastoral return to our rural roots.
If tomato stakes, then why not chickens? Surely, there’s room in our great spaces for animals that feed us, along with the ones we feed.
(Besides, there's the cute factor, like Noodle Soup, Salad Sandwich and Pot Pie over at 3ChixaDay.)
For families awash in leftover Easter eggs, this classic spinach salad is a welcome way to help reduce their number to that of perhaps one or two fertile hens. But even if you must boil some eggs especially for the salad, it is a reminder of how simple ingredients can yield something completely satisfying.
HOW to SAVE 300 CALORIES and 9 WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS IN A SINGLE SERVING By accident, I left out an entire 2/3 cup of oil in the warm bacon dressing. I truly thought it was a typo! But what a happy accident! The bacon flavor isn’t watered (oiled?) down and the dressing remains warm and the lemon adds a bright sharpness. If the dressing is a little sharp for your taste, add a little more bacon fat but trust me, you'll need far less than 2/3 of a cup. Spring’s light is here, light food just seems right too.
SPINACH SALAD with WARM BACON DRESSING
Time to table: 30 minutes
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 6 tablespoons lemon juice (from about 3 lemons)
- Salt & freshly ground black pepper
- 4 strips bacon (see TIPS)
- 12 ounces baby spinach, washed well and dried
- 1 handful radish sprouts (see TIPS)
- 4 fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 2 hard-cooked eggs, chopped (if need be, Perfect Hard-Cooked Eggs)
- 1/2 a small red onion, peeled and sliced very thin into rings
DRESSING In a small bowl, combine all dressing ingredients except the bacon fat. Set aside for the flavors to meld – you know, to get all friendly and cozy together – while prepping the salad. In a small skillet, cook the bacon pieces until crispy, transfer bacon to a plate covered with a paper towel. Reserve two tablespoons of the bacon fat in the skillet, save the rest for another use.
SALAD While the bacon cooks, prep the spinach, mushrooms, eggs and onion.
COMBINE Just before serving, if needed, rewarm the 2 tablespoons bacon fat, then stir in the lemon mixture (it will sizzle). In a large bowl, toss the spinach and sprouts with the warm dressing until the leaves are evenly covered. Gently stir in the cooked bacon pieces, mushrooms, eggs and onion. Transfer to serving plates. Serve and savor!
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