Thursday, January 3, 2013

Warm mushroom, chestnut, and bacon salad


Bacon, mushrooms, and chestnuts go together so well. This salad recipe came from Ripe by Nigel Slater (one of my new cookbooks). This cookbook is really lovely and is full of beautiful photographs and delicious looking recipes featuring fruit. I guess I never really consider things like chestnuts to be fruit, but they are, and there's a whole chestnut section in the book. I bought up a bunch of chestnuts while they were available, so I was immediately drawn to this section of the book. The recipe recommends frisee or baby spinach as the greens, but I had radicchio in the fridge and thought it would also be good in this salad and provide another color. The warm mixture on top of the greens provides a nice contrast. I also added some red wine vinegar because I thought it was needed to cut through the fat and boost the dressing flavor.

My husband and I ate this as a light dinner with some bread and cheese. I think that if we weren't already having some cheese in our meal, some crumbled gorgonzola or goat cheese would have made an excellent addition to this salad. Below is my slightly modified version of this recipe for two. Serve this as a side dish or as a light lunch or dinner with soup and/or bread.

Warm mushroom, chestnut, and bacon salad
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 pat of unsalted butter 
3 slices of bacon, diced 
about 8 oz. oyster mushrooms, sliced
about 3 oz. roasted and peeled chestnuts, halved
1 clove garlic, minced
sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
about 4 cups greens (I used a mix of radicchio and frisee)

Warm the olive oil and butter in a small skillet. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until it's crispy. Remove with a slotted spoon and set on a paper towel.

Add the mushrooms to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to turn brown and soft. Add the garlic and chestnuts to the skillet and stir. Cook for about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the red wine vinegar and stir well.

Divide the greens equally onto two salad plates or bowls. Top each with half of the mushroom mixture (including any drippings as this is the dressing) and half of the bacon. Serve immediately.


What was I cooking one year ago?: Moroccan stewed beef with prunes and apricots
Two years ago?: Sausage gravy 
Three?: New Year's Day lentil soup with mint        

26 comments:

  1. Love oyster mushrooms. This looks delicious!

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  2. Mmm...you know, salads don't often appeal to me, particularly because they're cold, but this warm salad looks wonderful, especially with the chestnuts and bacon.

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  3. This is the perfect winter salad!

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  4. Wait...chestnuts are fruits? Nice! Learned something new today. I am really fond of chestnuts. Growing up in the Philippines, we get these fruits (!) during the holiday season and we roast them over charcoal (it is common to have an outdoor kitchen in the tropics so we can do stuff like these...) YUM! I can imagine how tasty these chestnuts make the salad...

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  5. That looks so fresh and tasty!

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  6. Lovely recipe, great way to use up anything that might be left from Christmas too!

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  7. Bacon really is a great answer to making any salad worthy of being a main course. It's so delicious and satisfying, and when thrown in with mushrooms who are great at absorbing such flavor, it's a win!

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  8. This salad looks delicious, I love the combination of bacon and mushrooms!

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  9. Bacon makes salad amazing. I love the chestnuts for added crunch!

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  10. This sound so good! I love the flavors of chestnuts lately. I also think this would be delish with some feta cheese on top!

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  11. That looks AMAZING! I love salad but sometimes eating it in the winter just doesn't feel right, and this is a perfect solution. I would love to try it with the Gorgonzola!

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  12. A whole section on chestnuts? How fabulous! I must take a peek at this book now :D

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  13. Hi Amy, your salad look so appetizing. I love chestnut,your salad look really delicious. :)

    Have a nice weekend,regards.

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  14. Chestnuts and mushrooms sounds so buttery and delicious together in this salad; I love a good balance of lightness and creamy richness in salads so this looks amazing!

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  15. This is the perfect salad for these cold winter nights. What a great combination!

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  16. Hi Amy! You salad looks great (well, all your recipes are always so great looking! ) I want to invite you to pop over to my blog for my first ever Link-Up! Share a favorite meatless meal.

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  17. oh man, this sounds soooo delicious! i've bookmarked this!

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  18. I love a great salad! This looks amazing!

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  19. I love his book Tender and I happen to have a whole bunch of chestnuts on hand! I want to eat this next to my wood stove with bread and cheese - perfect!

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  20. Lovely combination of ingredients, looks so good!

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  21. Ooooh I love chestnuts! But I never know what to do with them other than our usual Thanksgiving chestnut & sausage stuffing.... this sounds amazing though!

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  22. I am loving all of these salads everyone is posting. This salad looks like it would still be delicious if I didn't put the bacon in. Yum!

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  23. Nigel Slater's great, isn't he? This winter-style salad rocks!

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