This is a hearty salad. Bacon, eggs, potatoes, yep it has it all. Traditionally it is served atop frisee greens but here I'm opting for shredded cabbage and mustard greens, which stand up to the strong, warm dressing and are also more readily available and often better quality than frisee. It makes an excellent, complete dinner, enough for four as an entree or two as a main-sized salad – just poach one egg for each person.
350g small-medium starchy potatoes like a Dutch cream or sebago
130ml olive oil
85g cured streaky bacon (4 slices, check gluten-free if required)
60g spring onions (3-4, white and light green parts), thinly sliced
2 cloves minced garlic
¼ tsp salt
2 tbsp red wine vinegar, plus a little extra to serve
60-80g shredded cabbage and mix of mustard greens
2 or 4 eggs
1. Place the potatoes in a small pot of salted cold water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until they can be pierced with a knife and it goes through without resistance. Drain and allow to cool on a tray. Once cool, crush the potatoes, using a cupped hand, to be somewhat flat but holding together. Set aside. This can be done ahead and placed in the fridge until ready.
2. When ready to prepare the dish for serving, place the potatoes over medium heat in a frying pan with 80 millilitres of olive oil. Without handling them too much, fry on one side for 10 to 15 minutes then on the other side for 10 to 15 minutes. If they are getting too dark, turn the heat to low. The key is to cook them for as long as possible so they get extra crisp without getting too dark. When ready, drain on paper towels and sprinkle with salt. Keep warm in a low oven while you prepare the rest of the dish.
3. To make the dressing, cut the bacon into small lardons. Gently fry in a small pan with 20 millilitres of olive oil. When the bacon is almost crisp and fully rendered, add the spring onions, garlic and salt. Gently fry these for about three minutes. Turn heat off and add the vinegar, remaining 30 millilitres of olive oil and a few cracks of black pepper. Set aside but keep warm.
4. Chiffonade your cabbage but not too thinly, into five-millimetre wide slices. Mix with some mustard leaves. Divide the greens among two or four shallow bowls or plates. Give each plate of greens a little splash of red wine vinegar and sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt.
5. Poach the eggs one at a time – two if you're serving as a main or four as an entree – by bringing water to a bare simmer in a small pot and cracking an egg right in. Freshest eggs work best as the white holds together tightly. Scoop it out with a slotted spoon held over a tea towel while the yolk is still runny, about two to three minutes.
6. Drizzle dressing over the greens and distribute the crisp potatoes among the bowls. Add a runny poached egg to the centre, sprinkle salt and pepper on the egg. Serve immediately.
Find more of Danielle Alvarez's recipes in the Good Food Favourite Recipes cookbook.