Nothing in the Fridge Salad

November 7, 2012

spinach salad

I made a version of this a couple of weeks ago when I came home from Brussels about 9 at night, and was starving. X suggested pizza, and in fact, left to go down the street to fetch one for himself. I was in the mood for something lighter, but figured I’d  just be scrambling up an egg, my go-to default dinner when it’s late and I’m starving.

Mais non, y’all — I opened up the veggie drawer and discovered a half-eaten bag of baby spinach, and remembered how much I love the yolk-plus-vinaigrette combo, so dinner suddenly became something much more interesting and elegant – and just as quick to make as a scrambled egg. I put some water onto boil, poached an egg, quickly made a vinaigrette, and threw it all together about ten minutes.

So when I was at the Casino the other day, I decided that I needed to buy spinach and roquette (because for some reason I usually only buy one and not the other) in case I had another night like that one.

Which, turns out, I did recently. This time, I poached two eggs for the salad, and threw in some toasted pecans and curls of a young Comté that X brought home the day before. You could use Manchego, Brebis, or Parmesan. Or skip the cheese altogether. It really doesn’t matter. But it does add a little something, and it does look pretty, doesn’t it?

I tossed the salad with a molasses vinaigrette, and that was that. Dinner, again, in less time than it takes to scroll through Pinterest. Which I just may do now.

The point of this rambling story is this: if you’ve got eggs, then you’ve got dinner. And if you’ve got spinach and eggs, then you’re on your way to a great Frenchy bistro-style salad, and that’s always a fun thing to eat, wherever you are.

Nothing in the Fridge Salad

Makes 2 dinner-size salads

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 6-ounce/170 gram bag of spinach
  • a handful of pecans, toasted
  • a few curls of Comté, Gruyère or Swiss cheese
  • Molasses Vinaigrette, recipe follows

1. Put a pot of about 4 inches of salty water onto boil, and when it bubbles vigorously, turn it down to a simmer. Now you’re ready to poach your eggs. 
Crack your eggs one by one into a small bowl and oh so gently lower into this the simmering water, letting the egg slide out completely. Do this with the other eggs, if they’ll all fit, and set the timer for 2 minutes. When the buzzer sounds, remove each of the eggs and place them gently on a paper towel to drain.

2. Toss your spinach in a large bowl with a good drizzle of the Molasses Vinaigrette and divide between two plates. Top with two eggs each, sprinkle with pecans, add your Comté curls, and dinner is served. Yummy!

Basil-Molasses Vinaigrette

Makes about 1/3 cup

  • 2 tablespoons of finely chopped shallots
  • 2 tablespoons of sherry vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of grainy mustard
  • 1 tablespoon of molasses
  • 2 large basil leaves, chopped
  • sea salt and pepper
  • 4 tablespoons of grapeseed oil

Put your shallots, sherry vinegar, grainy mustard, molasses, chopped basil, and a pinch of salt and pepper in a jam jar and give it a good shake. Let it rest for about 10 minutes, add the oil, and shake again. Taste for seasonings.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Stephanie November 7, 2012 at 5:26 PM

My French mother in law always says if you have eggs in the fridge, you have dinner!! So true.

Becky November 8, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Love the molasses vinaigerette idea! A great southern sweetner for that sweet smokey depth of flavor. Gonna try it!

Rainbow January 5, 2014 at 6:27 AM

KimAn avid reader of your blog via FB (KD) cued me in that you’d made this sututitsbion. Sounds like an excellent option for when asparagus isn’t in season. We’ll definitely be trying it (and maybe we’ll ask you to bring it to dinner next time)!

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