Bacon and eggs?
Breakfast for supper?
Who says no to that?
Toss together tender and flavourful baby spinach leaves with a handful of crunchy sunflower seeds, some crisp bacon slices, perfectly boiled fresh eggs and a robust, grainy mustard-miso dressing and you have a flavour explosion in your mouth – of the good kind. Miso paste adds a salty umami richness to this vinaigrette dressing that stands up well to the parade of hearty ingredients.
This salad makes a lovely light lunch, or a complete meal if you serve it with a slice of whole-grain bread, or maybe even a cheesie Irish Toastie on the side.
Set the eggs to boil and fry up the bacon slices while you prepare the dressing, and you can have this on the table in 15 minutes – especially if you cheat with the wonderful convenience of a package of pre-washed baby spinach to save you time and give you nice dry spinach leaves to start with. The following method for hard-boiling eggs will deliver perfectly boiled eggs each time.
I love the cheery retro look of this salad.
Bacon, Egg and Spinach Salad with Mustard Miso Vinaigrette
- 5 oz (142gm) package pre-washed baby spinach leaves
- ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted sunflower seeds
- 8 slices bacon, cut crosswise in half
- 4 large eggs
- 4 (or more) cherry tomatoes
for the mustard miso vinaigrette
- 3 tablespoons (45ml) olive oil
- 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
- 1½ tablespoons miso paste
- 1½ tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon water
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Fry the bacon half-slices in a large skillet over medium heat until golden brown and crisp.
While the bacon is frying, set the eggs into a saucepan, cover with cold water by about ½ inch and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once they come to a full rolling boil, remove the saucepan from the burner, cover with a lid, and set the timer for 10 minutes. Don’t remove the lid during that time.
While the bacon is frying and the eggs are cooking, prepare the dressing. Measure all ingredients into a measuring cup or small bowl, and whisk vigourously until creamy smooth with no lumps.
When the bacon is crisp, remove it to paper towels to drain.
Tip the spinach leaves into a large bowl and sprinkle with the sunflower seeds.
When the 10 minutes is up for the eggs steeping in the hot water, drain the water and set the saucepan into the sink. Cover the eggs with cold water, leaving the water to run into the pot for a minute or two, until it stays cold. Remove the eggs from the water and crack them gently against a hard surface until the shells are cracked all over. Return them to the water and leave them there for a few minutes until they are cooled through, refreshing the water if it gets warmed by the eggs.
Peel the eggs, and quarter them lengthwise.
Drizzle the vinaigrette over the spinach and sunflower seeds, then toss it well to coat everything evenly.
Divide the spinach between 4 salad plates, arrange 4 bacon half-slices and 4 egg quarters on top of the greens, then garnish each with a cherry tomato or two.
Serve immediately with a hearty loaf of rustic bread or the Irish Cheese Toasties.
This recipe was prepared for Dole National Salad Day, which is May 1 (the first day of national salad MONTH). Gotta love that.
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