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20 minutes

Frisee aux Lardons

This is a salad that makes rational normal humans, especial men, lick their plate. Why? Bacon. Yes, BACON. Specifically lardons which is the French way of saying a nice fatty cube of meat. Rendered bacon and bacon fat. This salad has it all and only 4 ingredients, unless you count the salt and pepper. Or the poached egg which is traditionally served on top.
This is a classic French salad called Frisée aux Lardon-Bacon Salad. Traditionally, it is made with a type of endive called frisée, but it can be hard to find in the supermarket, so I used a combination of romaine and kale to replication the crunch/slight bitterness of frisée.
Use either slab or thick cut bacon to make the lardons. The skinny stuff won’t yield the same results.
Trust me your diners will be picking up every last one of those tiny crispy bacon bits until someone clears the plate away.

Ingredients

  • 2 head of fresh frisée or a combination of romaine and kale
  • 8 oz. slab bacon (or thick cut)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tsp. light brown sugar
  • ¼ C. white wine vinegar

Directions

1.

Wash the lettuce and dry it.

2.

Cut the bacon into lardons (thick ¾” long strips).

Slab Bacon Cut Into Lardons

3.

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat and add the bacon.

4.

Cook, stirring frequently until the fat is rendered out and the lardons are crisp.

Lardons Cooked

5.

Divide the lettuce among 4 plates and season with salt and pepper.

6.

Fish the crispy lardons out of the fat and drain on a paper towel. SAVE THE FAT.

Lardons and Fat

7.

In a small skillet combine the sugar and vinegar and cook over medium heat until the mixture gets syrupy. This is called a gastrique.

8.

Add the gastrique to the fat, season with salt and pepper and mix well.

9.

Sprinkle the lardons over the lettuce, season with salt and pepper and drizzle the warm dressing over the salad. Serve immediately.

Add a poached egg on top for an extra delicious treat.