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Frisée aux Lardons: I'm in love!

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Frisée aux Lardons: I'm in love!

Will Owen | | Jan 22, 2009 06:02 PM

Ever since I first read about this I've been lusting to try it, but just contemplating the logistics of doing the full-classic version - the bacon, the vinaigrette, having the frisée still be sprightly by the time the eggs are poached - had me intimidated for the longest time. And then one evening I had a simple meal planned, some baked fish and a winter squash purée finished in a gratin pan; I also had two small heads of frisée from the farmer's market and some really nice slab bacon. So I thought about it, and all of a sudden it made perfect logistical sense. It went like this:

First I cut about two ounces of bacon into 1/2" dice, and made a vinaigrette with a Tbs. of wine vinegar, a small dollop of Dijon mustard, a pinch of salt and maybe a bit less than a half-cup of oil. Then I put the iron skillet on to heat, plus another pan with 2" or so of water and a dash of vinegar. While all of this got hot I tore up the frisée into two bowls and broke two (room-temperature!) eggs into two cups. I then tossed the bacon in the skillet until it was brown and crisp, and turned the other pan, now boiling, down to a gentle simmer. I poured the vinaigrette into the skillet, scraped it around a bit, then distributed all of this more or less equally over the two bowls of frisée. In the middle of this activity I put the eggs into the water to poach, and called Mrs. O to the table. In four minutes the eggs were perfect, and with a slotted server (mine is an elderly Kitch-A-Ma-Jig) I scooped an egg onto each salad, and added a pinch of salt and a grind of pepper. Mrs. O subsequently expressed liking for the dish and deep affection for me, and asked why the hell we'd never had this before.

Today at the farmer's market I bought two more heads of frisée...

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