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Warm Spinach Salad with Eggs, Bacon & Croutons

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Serves six as a first course, four as a main course.

When buying spinach, look for leaves that are uniformly green and crisp. Avoid those that are wilted, excessively wet, or yellowed. Fresh spinach can be quite gritty, especially the larger bundled leaves, so wash it very carefully.

  • 2 large eggs
  • Kosher salt
  • 4-1/2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 3 to 4 oz. rustic, coarse-textured bread, crust removed, cut into 3/4-inch cubes (to yield 3 cups)
  • 3 Tbs. sherry vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 slices bacon, cut into 3/4-inch squares
  • 1 small shallot, minced (1-1/2 Tbs.)
  • 10 cups loosely packed baby spinach leaves, washed and dried (about 10 oz.)

Put the eggs in a small saucepan of water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil for 4 minutes. Turn off the heat and let cool in the water. When the eggs are cool, crack and peel them. Chop the eggs, season to taste with salt, and reserve.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F. Heat 1-1/2 Tbs. of the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until it starts to turn gold, about 1 minute. Discard the garlic.

Arrange the bread in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with the garlic-infused oil, sprinkle with a little salt, and toss. Bake, shaking the bread cubes once, until golden and crispy, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 3 Tbs. olive oil, the sherry vinegar, and the mustard. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

In a 10-inch skillet, cook the bacon over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until golden brown and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels. Add the shallot to the pan and cook, stirring, until softened, about 1 minute. Let the pan cool slightly and add the vinaigrette to the pan, whisking well to blend the ingredients.

Toss the warm vinaigrette and the spinach together in a large bowl. Transfer to a platter and garnish with the chopped eggs, bacon, and croutons. Serve immediately.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on six servings; Calories (kcal): 190; Fat (g): 14; Fat Calories (kcal): 120; Saturated Fat (g): 2.5; Protein (g): 5; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 9; Carbohydrates (g): 13; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1.5; Sodium (mg): 460; Cholesterol (mg): 75; Fiber (g): 2;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Delicious and easy-- veg-averse husband loved it, but kid said it's spinach and to heck with it. Ha, more for mom and dad.

My 12-year old son LOVES this. I love that it is so easy and so darn tasty!

everyone loves this including the kids

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