Salads in winter? Bien sûr! This richly filled salad with Roquefort and bacon has gutsy flavors that will make you forget the cold!
DIET FOOD? OF COURSE NOT!
I love salads for lunch. They are not only healthy, but also versatile. I honestly can’t think of an ingredient that wouldn’t go well in a salad — from meats, to cheeses, to a rainbow of vegetables, fruits and fragrant herbs and spices. I guess you can say that salads feed me and my creativity!
Not everyone is a fan of salads, however, and especially not in winter. Salads still haven’t shaken off the image of being boring ‘diet’ food, and saying the word ‘salad’ alone often brings to mind tasteless lettuce leaves, watery tomatoes and cucumbers or shredded carrots that are best fit for a rabbit.
Well, not chez nous! If I tell you I’m having salad for lunch, you can pretty much assume that it will include delicious things such as leftover roast chicken, fish (I love mackerel and smoked salmon), creamy avocados, roasted nuts, blobs of my favorite cheeses, and if I’m in the mood to really treat myself, sliced magret or even gésiers (duck gizzards — don’t judge, they’re delicious!).
Topping my list of favorite wintertime salads is my rustic salad with bacon, Roquefort, sun-dried tomatoes and walnuts. This salad pretty much has it all: the saltiness of the bacon, the zestiness of the Roquefort, the sweetness of the sun-dried tomatoes and honey-mustard dressing, and a little crunch courtesy of a handful of roasted walnuts. Try it, and the next time someone rolls their eyes when you tell them you’re having salad for lunch, mention this recipe.
NOTE: I served my salad in Revol’s Arborescence coupe dish. This gorgeous porcelain dish (shown here in the shade ‘pepper’) beautifully shows off my rustic salad and makes it just a bit more special. Food should be enjoyed with all the senses — and that’s why I love presenting my dishes in pieces that are as visually appealing as the food itself! With its unique wood-inspired texture, Revol’s Arborescence collection draws its inspiration from nature and features bowls, plates, mugs and cups in seventeen different shapes and three shades (pepper, licorice and ivory). Also shown are the beechwood serving spoons.
Rustic Salad with Bacon & Roquefort
- 4 thick slices bread, cubed
- Extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle
- 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
- Fleur de sel and freshly cracked pepper
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp honey
- 2 tbsps sunflower oil
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 200g slab of bacon, cubed
- 200g mixed salad greens
- 100g Roquefort
- 50g walnuts
- 50g sun-dried tomatoes
Preheat the oven to 220°C and line a baking sheet with baking paper. Spread the cubed bread over the baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until crisp. Make the dressing. Put the vinegar in a small bowl and add the salt, pepper, Dijon mustard and honey. Whisk well. Pour in the oils while whisking. Fry the bacon in an ungreased pan until crisp and golden. Drain on paper towels. Divide half of the salad leaves over a large serving bowl. Top with half of the bread, bacon, Roquefort, walnuts and sundried tomatoes. Drizzle with half of the dressing. Repeat with the rest of the ingredients, but give everything a gentle toss before drizzling with the rest of the dressing. Serve with a smooth Merlot.