It is mid-December and it is almost 70 degrees today! The drought has finally had some relief with a luscious downpour early this morning and a few days before. In the backyard garden, herbs are still flourishing, a late harvest of newly grown arugula lettuces are ready to be cut for cooking, and the young white turnips are almost mature.
I can hardly think of a heavy Holiday feast when the sun is shining and the rosebuds are awakened unexpectedly.
Nonetheless, I welcome the warm interruption and take advantage of its gift.
What do we eat on a day like today? Our bodies have been eating dishes that offer comfort and warmth. Today, it is craving a refreshing, but satisfying salad to reflect the unexpected warm weather.
One of my favorite salads that I often have for a light Sunday Supper is a fresh garden salad with a still-tender center boiled egg and crispy pancetta or applewood smoked bacon. It is soothing dish without being too filling or complicated on the palate.
Garden Arugula Salad with Organic Boiled Egg and Applewood Smoked Bacon
1/4 pound pancetta or bacon slices, cut into small pieces
1 large handful of fresh spinach leaves, gently washed and dried
2 fresh, organic eggs
In a saute pan, cook pancetta or bacon over med. low heat until all fat is rendered and the pieces are browned and crisp.
Remove the pieces with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Set aside until ready to use.
Heat a saucepan over medium heat with 6 cups water until boiling. Gently place the eggs into the pan and cook for about 8 minutes. Drain the water and run the eggs under cool water for a few seconds, just until they are easy to handle and can be peeled. Peel the eggs, being carefully not to crack them open.
Toss the spinach with enough vinaigrette just to lightly coat the leaves. Refrigerate any remaining vinaigrette for another use.
On two plates, divide the spinach leaves and place one egg, slicing it open so the runny yolk spills over the plate.
Top with the pancetta or bacon pieces. Sprinkle fresh cracked black pepper over the top.
Serve while eggs are still warm.
For the Vinaigrette:
1 teaspoon mustard
1 Tablespoon sherry wine vinegar
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly cracked pepper
copyright 2007 Alisa Barry
In a small bowl, add the mustard and vinegar. Slowly drizzle in olive oil and whisk until emulsified.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. * NOTE: the pancetta or bacon will be salty, so adjust seasoning accordingly.