We had a good 4th of July weekend. For me, that constitutes getting to leave the house a glorious three times, including trips to the grocery store and farmer’s market. Nolan had never been to either place, and he was quite a champ, looking around quietly from his sling while we shopped. At the grocery store, we picked up fixings for an all-American sort of dinner: New York strip steaks, baby spinach for a classic salad with hot bacon vinaigrette, and (at Jeremy’s request) Boston baked beans. The steaks were coated in a mixture of oil and clarified butter and seasoned aggressively with salt and pepper, then cooked to a perfect medium on our cast iron grill. The salad was a tasty complement, with crisp bacon, sweet shallot, and hard-boiled egg.
At the farmer’s market the next day, our score included white asparagus, three kinds of wild mushrooms, dinosaur kale, and a big head of frisee lettuce. I would have liked to get more, but I couldn’t carry much with the baby, and Jeremy had his hands full with Freyja, who was in rare form trying to keep our little herd together. (Every time I went into a booth to buy something, she whined something fierce. Everyone stared at her, and several people commented on how protective she was being of me. She just wouldn’t let me out of her sight.) Anyway, I decided to use the frisee to make us another classic salad with eggs and bacon for lunch that day: a bistro salad with poached eggs and a sherry vinaigrette. Its similarity to the spinach salad was not lost on me, but the overall effect was quite different, mostly due to the extreme bitterness of the frisee. Tasty as it was, I think I prefer this salad in its fried egg sandwich incarnation, which cuts down on the volume of frisee.