Quick, simple salad frees up your time [UPDATED]Published 2:30pm Tuesday, May 15, 2012 Updated 8:54am Wednesday, May 16, 2012
With warmer temperatures finally here, two things happen: I want to plant things and I want quick, tasty favorite summer-time foods, which this BLT Salad is.
On the spur of the moment recently, which is frequently how our entertaining happens, I invited a friend and my daughter to supper. While looking for another recipe I found this salad and it sounded perfect for the evening meal with family and a friend.
What makes it even better was that I could prepare it quickly — I had less than an hour to pull supper together after work and before my guests arrived — but it looked elegant and I knew it would be a good taste combination. So, although it was an experiment, my daughter and friend never suspected it was the first time I had made it.
I made the salad even quicker by using prepared croutons. There are packages of real bacon bits in stores these days and I bet those would work if you are really, really in a hurry. However, I happened to have bacon on hand and it was cooked in no time. And the recipe calls for a couple tablespoons of the bacon drippings for the dressing (though I forgot to use the drippings and the dressing was still tasty), so if you have the time, fry the bacon.
Even if you aren’t planning to serve guests, give the salad a try so you can go plant something.
1 pound sliced bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup butter, cubed
4 slices white bread, crusts removed, and cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 to 5 tablespoons minced fresh basil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
6 cups torn romaine
1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes
In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels; drain, reserving 2 tablespoons drippings. Set bacon and drippings aside.
In another large skillet, melt butter. Add bread cubes. Cook over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove to paper towels; cool.
For dressing, whisk the mayonnaise, basil, vinegar, pepper, garlic and reserved drippings. In a large bowl, combine romaine, tomatoes and bacon. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat. Top with croutons.