Recipes Salads Green Salads Wilted Spinach Salad with Pancetta Lardons and Warm Vinaigrette

Wilted Spinach Salad with Pancetta Lardons and Warm Vinaigrette

Wilted Spinach Salad with Pancetta Lardons and Warm Vinaigrette is rated 5.0 out of 5 by 1.
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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 8

Our version of the classic warm spinach salad features a delicious combination of flavors and textures: sweet-tart dried fruit, crunchy toasted almonds and bits of savory pancetta.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb. pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • Vegetable oil as needed
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped shallot
  • 2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 10 oz. spinach
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1/4 cup dried Turkish apricots, julienned
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • Shaved ricotta salata cheese for serving

Directions:

Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook until crisp and the fat has rendered, about 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pancetta to a paper towel-lined plate. Carefully pour the rendered fat through a fine-mesh sieve into a heatproof measuring cup; discard the solids.

Add enough vegetable oil to the pancetta fat to equal 1/2 cup. In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon zest, shallot, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and mustard. While whisking, slowly add the pancetta fat in a slow, steady stream until the vinaigrette is emulsified. Season with salt and pepper. If the vinaigrette is cool, heat in a microwave at 30-second increments until warm.

In a large bowl, combine the spinach and half each of the almonds, apricots, cranberries, onion and pancetta. Drizzle with about 2 Tbs. of the vinaigrette and toss to coat. Transfer to a platter. Garnish with the remaining almonds, apricots, cranberries, onion and pancetta. Drizzle about 2 Tbs. of the vinaigrette on top and garnish with the cheese. Serve immediately and pass the remaining vinaigrette at the table. Serves 6 to 8.

Williams-Sonoma Kitchen.

Rated 5 out of 5 by from This is a keeper! I made this for Thanksgiving and it was a hit! Couldn't find the ricotta salata cheese so subsituted feta cheese. I fried the pancetta and made the dressing the day before and prepped nuts and apricots. Just warmed up dressing on Thanksgiving, worked perfect. Variety of flavors and textures. Pancetta a little pricey.
Date published: 2012-11-24
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