CSA Cooking: Quick-Cured Bacon Pan Vinaigrette over Spinach, Mustard Greens, and Kale with a Poached Egg [with video]

Quick-curing your own bacon is easier than you might think, but it's not even necessary for this tasty salad.

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Quick-Cured Bacon Pan Vinaigrette over Spinach, Mustard Greens, and Kale with a Poached Egg

Quick-curing your own bacon is easier than you might think. You need just one thick slice to make this mouthwatering vinaigrette, but trust us, you’ll want to smoke a few extra pieces for snacking. Don’t feel like firing up your grill? Just swap in a slice of thick-cut bacon and you can whip up this satisfying salad in 15 minutes flat.

Dry rub mix

  • 1 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Salad and bacon pan vinaigrette

  • 1 thick (about ½-inch) slice pork belly
  • 2 handfuls spinach
  • 2 handfuls mustard greens
  • 2 handfuls kale
  • Olive oil, for crisping bacon
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 2 farm-fresh eggs
  • ½ shallot, (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon stone-ground mustard
  • ½ lemon
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon truffle oil (for finishing (optional))
  1. Preheat a charcoal grill or smoker to 250°F; add apple wood chips and get the smoke going. Mix together dry rub ingredients in a small bowl and place pork belly slice in a baking pan. Sprinkle rub over both sides of pork belly, pressing it into the meat with your hands to adhere. Place pan on grill (we propped it up on a grill extender), close lid, and smoke for 20–30 minutes, until bacon is crisp and infused with apple wood flavor. Remove pan from grill.
  2. Preheat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high to high heat. Hand tear spinach, mustard greens, and kale into a bowl, tearing kale into smaller pieces than the other greens. Chop bacon (you’ll have about ¼ cup), toss it into the hot skillet with a touch of olive oil, and cook briefly to crisp it up even more.
  3. Bring a small saucepan of water to just under a boil. Add salt and 2 tablespoons vinegar. Crack an egg into a small ramekin and gently slip egg into simmering water. Add the second egg to the pan and poach both for about 5 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, make pan vinaigrette. Stir shallots, mustard, 1–2 squeezes lemon juice, remaining 1 teaspoon vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste into the chopped bacon and drippings in hot skillet.
  5. Pour warm vinaigrette over greens, tossing to coat. Divide salad between two serving bowls, Top each serving with a poached egg and finish with plenty of cracked pepper and ½ teaspoon truffle oil, if desired.

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