Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Bacon, Fig and Blue Cheese Salad

As I make my way up the five flights of stairs every evening I like to play the "whose apartment would I want to have dinner in" game judging by the smells coming out of each one.  I often smell curries on the third floor and fish (in the good way, cooked and yummy) on the fourth floor.  Every once in a while I'll catch a whiff of chocolate or cookies and even bread one random Sunday.  I think the fact I've only smelled bread once is directly related to how small my kitchen is and therefore how small everyone else's kitchen is.  I barely have enough room to put two bowls on a kitchen surface much less flour, knead and roll something onto a surface.

Living on the fifth floor means that you can cook anything you like without offending any neighbors (except the one other poor soul on the fifth floor -- but after an evening playing mediator between the superintendent and this neighbor's temper after painters locked them out of their apartment, I think they owe me one).  However, that also means you can't woo your neighbors from being 'just neighbors' to 'more than neighbors' with enticing aromas.  Smells, similar to heat, tend to rise and therefore, they will never know the wondrous concoctions I am making in Apartment 1E.  

With one exception.  Bacon.  When I fry bacon, I am pretty sure that not only do my clothes smell like bacon for a week but so does the rest of the buildings'.  This could be because I am frying up the entire package of thick, maple glazed bacon and not just a slice or two.  Therefore, it tends to linger.  And the caveat is that, with this recipe, the bacon goes in a salad, full of healthy things like spinach and figs (a new favorite of mine).  So you CAN have your bacon and eat it too.  At least in #1E.  

Bacon, Fig and Blue Cheese Salad
Adapted from #76 here 
This recipe is all about your personal taste so adjust as you see fit.

5 fresh figs
4 dried figs
4-6 (or 8, I'm not judging) slices of bacon
3 tablespoons blue cheese
6 cups of spinach
balsamic vinegar, the nicer the variety the better

Chop the fresh figs and dice the dried figs.  Cook the bacon and reserve some of the fat.  Crumble the bacon once it has cooled.  Put the greens in a salad bowl and drizzle with the leftover bacon fat and balsamic vinegar. Add both the fresh and diced figs, crumbled bacon and blue cheese.  Toss until combined.

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