As promised in my Q&A with O.C. native Ann Mah, a recipe today from her “Mastering the Art of French Eating” (Pamela Dornan Books/Viking, 2013). It’s salade Lyonnaise. Among salads, are there any better than those with bacon and eggs? Mah’s version of this classic has coddled eggs, rather than poached, making for an especially nice presentation as an oozy, runny, golden yolk is revealed in each serving.
Ann Mah’s Salade Lyonnaise
During my visit to Lyon, I ate salade Lyonnaise at every meal except breakfast. The city’s bouchons usually serve it as a rib-sticking first course—often followed by a hearty hot dish like stewed tripe—but it can also be a satisfying lunch or a quick supper, especially because except for the lettuce, all the ingredients are kitchen staples. For a truly classic version, use dandelion leaves instead of frisée.—Ann Mah
(Makes 4 servings)
2 heads frisée or 2 bunches dandelion leaves, rinsed and dried
¼ pound bacon
Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
2 slices pain de campagne or rustic sourdough bread
2 cloves garlic, peeled
4 eggs, at room temperature
Tear lettuce into bite-sized pieces. (If using dandelion, remove hard stems.) Cut bacon into ¼-inch-thick matchsticks. Prepare vinaigrette. Lightly toast bread and rub one side with clove of garlic. Cut bread into ½-inch cubes.
For coddled eggs, bring large pot of water to boil. Gently lower unshelled eggs into boiling water and cook 5 minutes, adding 30 seconds if eggs are jumbo. Drain immediately and fill pan with cold water to stop cooking and cool eggs for handling. Gently crack and peel eggs, taking care not to tear the white. Rinse to remove bits of shell.
In frying pan over medium heat, cook bacon until starting to crisp and fat renders. Remove bacon pieces from pan. Lightly crush remaining clove of garlic and add to remaining fat, along with bread cubes. Turn bread until cubes are lightly toasted on all sides.
In large bowl, toss lettuce with vinaigrette. Scatter bacon and croutons over, arrange eggs on top, and serve family style.
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons mild-tasting oil
Salt and pepper to taste
In small, lidded jar, combine vinegar, mustard, and oil; cover and shake to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste and test with piece of lettuce; adjust if necessary.
From "Mastering the Art of French Eating: Lessons in Food and Love from a Year in Paris." Reprinted by arrangement with Pamela Dornan Books/Viking, a member of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, a Penguin Random House Company. Copyright © Ann Mah, 2013.