Last night, I made a dish of Duck Confit with Potatoes Sarladaise. In that post I mentioned a Salad Lyonnaise that I thoroughly enjoyed before the main dish. Alas, because of a memory card failure, I lost the photos of that salad. As a result it was only briefly mentioned with a promise that I would document it in a later post.
It’s Sunday morning and I was thinking about a light breakfast before heading out to the North of Panhandle (NOPA) neighborhood to eat whole hog at a benefit for South Carolina BBQ legend Rodney Scott. Scott’s pit burned down not long ago and the benefit is to help him rebuild. Great BBQ is hard to find in San Francisco, so I am really looking forward to the event hosted by Ryan Farr of 4505 Meats and Caleb Zigas from La Cocina.
In the meantime, it occurred to me that Salad Lyonnaise, having both bacon and egg, would make a great light breakfast, and kill two birds with one stone. First it will provide the light breakfast I need and second it gives me a second chance to photograph and document the dish.
Salad Lyonnaise is easy to make. This version closely follows Mark Bittman’s, New York Times recipe for Salad Lyonnaise. He has a great video that illustrates how he makes this salad.
While the water for poaching the egg is coming to temperature, a warm bacon and mustard vinaigrette is prepared on the stove. The egg is then cooked and the salad assembled.
The poached egg should be just barely done. Essentially, it is a warmed egg with a loose, runny yolk that when broken combines with the vinaigrette to make an incredible dressing.
To make the vinaigrette, first sauté batons of bacon until crisp, then deglaze the pan with vinegar, add mustard, stir to combine and then set aside until the salad is assembled. I like to use whole grain, Dijon mustard in vinaigrettes.
Bittman recommends the eggs be poached in water that is almost boiling. That is to say when small bubbles are gently rising to the surface and before a full rolling boil begins. This is a great piece of advice and is followed it here. Also, don’t become obsessed with how your eggs look in the water. Once removed to the plate it will look fine. It is really just a vehicle for the runny yolk.
Unfortunately, in the salad made to illustrate this recipe, the egg was a bit over cooked and the photography took longer than expected. The yolk was not very runny…but the result was still excellent. As presented here, the recipe serves two.
- 1 “head” of Curly Endive or Frisee
- 2 slices of thick bacon cut into ¼” batons
- 1 teaspoon minced shallot or red onion
- 4 tablespoons sherry or red wine vinegar
- 1 ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 room temperature eggs
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Cut the endive or frisee leaves into small bite size pieces and place in a large bowl with a pinch of salt. Set aside.
- Fill a large sauce pan with 2 to 3 inches of water and bring to a soft boil. While the water is coming to temperature, sauté the bacon in a pan until crisp. If the bacon does not render enough oil, add a teaspoon, or so of olive oil to the pan. Add the minced shallot or red onion to the pan with the bacon and continue to cook for 1 or 2 minutes. Add vinegar to the pan to deglaze, then reduce the vinegar by ½. Add mustard to the pan and stir to combine. Set aside.
- Crack the each egg into a small bowl. When the water reaches a gentle, slow boil (small bubbles rising to the top) slide the eggs into the water one at a time. Cook for about 2 to 3 minutes using a slotted spoon to gather egg whites to the yolk. Remove the eggs with a slotted spoon and set aside to drain while the salad is assembled.
- To serve: Toss the salad greens with the warm bacon/mustard vinaigrette to coat. Place the dressed salad on portion sized serving dishes. Place a poached egg on top of each serving and the eggs with salt and pepper to taste.