This recipe began with an obsession over the nuovo cavalo salad at a favourite Manhattan trattoria that shall stay unnamed — attempt as I’d, the chef wouldn’t quit the recipe.
I used to be on a post-holiday offensive to drop a number of kilos and on the time flirting with the ketogenic weight loss program, which made eating out problematic. The menu description — “crispy kale, arugula, poached egg, pine nuts, pork belly, Parmigiano dressing” — checked all the correct packing containers.
Admittedly, a plate of greens garnished with ham and topped with a poached egg is just not notably unique, and any bistro price its fleur de sel has le salade frisée aux lardons — curly endive dressed with a Dijon French dressing and garnished with bite-sized items of thick, crisp salt pork.
But that begs the query: How far eliminated is such a factor from that basic mid-American menu important, the iceberg wedge doused in a mayonnaise-based, blue-cheesy dressing and topped with that abomination generally known as bacon bits?
I see it as proof that, as with every significant human endeavor, intention, execution and uncooked supplies are what makes the distinction between eating and feeding.
The enchantment of my unique inspiration was a multitude of contemporary, hearty greens. Fortunately, even within the lifeless of winter, within the Hudson Valley we now have entry to bitter, leafy staples akin to arugula and kale (notably Lacinto or cavalo nero) and peppery mizuna or watercress, which appears to be making a market comeback.
Tender “baby” variations of any of the above are the basic grounds for this composition, modulated by the creamy and savory Parmesan dressing, the star of the dish. It is topped by heat, salty-crispy pork; an oozy, unctuous soft-cooked egg; and toasted pine nuts that add a ending woody crunch to this standalone lunch or dinner, weight loss program or not.
This is consolation meals of a distinct stripe and I daresay it will even make a nontraditional however satisfying breakfast.
Salad with Parmigiano Cream Dressing, Bacon and Egg
Makes 2 entrees
For the dressing:
1 cup mayonnaise*
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2/three cup Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese, finely grated
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
three teaspoons freshly cracked pepper
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt to style
For the salad:
¼ cup pignolis, toasted
four cups evenly packed small, tender greens (kale, arugula, mizuna, watercress or spinach)
1 thick (three/Eight- to ½-inch) slice of excellent bacon (or precooked pork stomach), reduce into ¾- to 1-inch-wide strips
2 eggs (at room temperature)
Place all substances for the dressing within the bowl of a small meals processor or blender and course of till easy. If the ultimate dressing is just too thick, skinny it with a tablespoon or two of heavy cream or milk whisked in by hand on the finish. Put apart three to four tablespoons of the dressing at room temperature. (You could have far more than you want. Refrigerate the rest.)
Toast pignolis in a dry skillet over medium-high warmth till they only start to paint. Remove from warmth and reserve. In a big saucepan add water to a depth of four inches and deliver to a boil for the eggs. While the water is heating, warmth a skillet over medium. Add bacon or precooked pork stomach slices and prepare dinner, stirring often, till a few of the fats has rendered and bacon is simply beginning to brown, about 5 to eight minutes.
When water for the eggs boils, scale back warmth to a delicate simmer and add 2 tablespoons white vinegar. (This will assist the egg whites keep collectively.) Crack an egg right into a small bowl, then gently slide it into the simmering water. Repeat with remaining egg, ready till the whites are beginning to set earlier than including the following one, or about 30 seconds aside. Cook eggs till whites are simply set and yolks are nonetheless runny (about three minutes for every egg). Using a slotted spoon, fastidiously switch eggs to paper towels to empty and reserve.
Place greens in a big bowl and prime with the reserved dressing; toss gently till evenly dressed and divide between two plates. Garnish every plate with half of the nice and cozy bacon and prime with a cooked egg. Scatter toasted pignolis over all. Finish with a sprinkling of salt, freshly floor black pepper and a grating of extra cheese if desired.
* Sure, make your personal mayonnaise, or purchase a top quality industrial model made out of well-sourced substances, and no components you could’t simply establish or justify. I like Sir Kensington’s (specifically, its avocado-oil recipe) out there at Foodtown in Cold Spring or Nature’s Pantry in Fishkill.