french bistro salad

2    |   
Prep Time:
10 minutes    |   
Cook Time:
6 minutes

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french bistro salad

This could also be called “frisèe my way” because it’s a riff on the classic egg, bacon, and curly endive salad you find in French bistros. It can be served as a light lunch or brunch or a first course at a bigger meal. A four-minute egg will give you a just-cooked white with and an almost-firm yolk. If you like it runnier, reduce time to 3 minutes; if you like it firmer, increase to 5 minutes.


1 head escarole, frisèe or butter lettuce (see note)
6 chives, thinly sliced
2 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
sea salt and freshly ground pepper


Wash the greens, tear into small pieces, spin dry, and place enough leaves for two generous salads in a medium salad bowl. Sprinkle in most of the chives, saving a pinch or two for garnish. Put pancetta in a nonstick frying pan with the oil. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until pancetta is just crisp. Turn off heat under pan.

Put eggs in a small saucepan and fill it with tap water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn off heat and let stand for 4 minutes (use a kitchen timer). One minute before time is up, turn heat under pancetta back on and when oil starts to sizzle, pour vinegar into pan and swirl to mix everything, then pour dressing right over greens in bowl. Toss greens and season with salt and pepper. Divide among 2 plates. When timer rings, take eggs out of pan, run under cold water, then tap all around equator of shell with the side of a spoon. Open each egg and spoon the contents onto each salad. Scatter the few remaining chives over the eggs and serve right away.