Wednesday, September 3, 2014
September's Here and Bacon Makes It Better
I have my September rituals, you see.
I get a new haircut:
I buy sunflowers, the last peaches and, shock, first pie pumpkin:
I look for the surprise morning glory, hiding at the end of the driveway in a day lily patch. It only blooms at the end of summer. Stubborn thing. Have you ever noticed the heart shape of a morning glory leaf?
And I start using my oven more.
I may have talked about easy ways to do bacon in the microwave, which is great for summer but not so great for saving the drippings. And you have to have drippings to make my spinach salad with hot bacon dressing.
Oven bacon: Into the oven, my bacon goes at 425. Over a rack in a foil lined pan.
In 20-25 minutes, the bacon looks like this:
After draining it on paper towels, it is perfect for crumbling up into homemade bacon bits. That's because it doesn't sit in it's own fat while it's cooking. Store your crumbles in the fridge until ready to use.
Don't forget to drain the bacon grease out of the pan for the dressing and store in a small jar for later use!
Now in order to get this:
You need to make the following:
Hot Bacon Dressing: In a small sauce pan, combine 3 tablespoons bacon grease, 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, 1 heaping teaspoon sugar, and one teaspoon Dijon mustard. Cook on low and whisk until sugar is dissolved, mixture is combined and dressing starts to thicken. Set aside. Increase ingredients proportionally for a larger crowd or if you like to drown your salad. This amount of ingredients makes enough for two servings. Note: I always make it fresh.
Julie's Rift on Spinach Salad:
Baby Spinach leaves to use as your salad bed
One hard boiled egg per person, sliced
One half small Yukon gold potato per person, microwaved until tender (served hot or cold)
Optional: sliced onions, Gruyere cheese
Put together your salad and drizzle warm dressing over top. Serve immediately.
So, how do you transition from late summer to early fall? Is there a place you always go? A crop you always look forward to? Are you sad summer is waning or ecstatic September is here?