Deluxe BLT Salad
Severe Thunderstorm Watch – three little words all Calgarians know, and which signal an important truth: It’s finally summer, and probably too hot to cook! One could break out the traditional suppertime cereal (again), but why not make something which hits all the flavour buttons, and calls to mind that quintessentially summery sandwich – the BLT. Make up a Deluxe BLT Salad – by which I mean add other ingredients that may not be as sandwich-friendly (like hardboiled eggs and fresh avocado), and you’ve got a cool, delicious, filling summer dinner, while waiting for the crashing and flashing to approach from the west.
- 1 heart of Romaine lettuce, washed and spun dry, and sliced into bite-sized pieces.
- 1 dozen cherry tomatoes, quartered
- 30g colby or mild cheddar cheese, sliced into matchsticks 1-2 cm long
- 3 hardboiled eggs, peeled and quartered lengthwise
- 8 slices precooked bacon, cut into 2-cm squares (Maple Leaf Ready Crisp is just about perfectly done for this application, and they make a low-sodium version – all GF)
- 1 medium avocado, sliced into squares and scooped out of the shell with a big spoon
- Your favorite salad dressing. I like Ranch, but Mandarin Orange, Catalina, and Italian Vinaigrette work very well, too.
Deluxe BLT Salad is not hard to build. The longest span of time in this recipe is probably boiling the eggs earlier in the day and letting them properly cool off – so do that in the morning before planning this for dinner. Otherwise, assemble the ingredients this way:
- Place all the lettuce in the bottom of a sizeable bowl.
- Layer on the quartered cherry tomatoes. (Freely substitute grape tomatoes, if you want to save on slicing time. And at this time of year, notice that most of our grocery stores are featuring locally-grown tomatoes – definitely full of excellent flavour).
- Add the colby (or cheddar) cheese, distributed evenly.
- Add the bacon pieces, also evenly all across the surface of the emerging salad masterpiece.
- Distribute the quartered eggs so that every major serving spoonful will get at least one or two.
- Add the chunked avocado.
- Do not toss this salad – the egg will disintegrate and make the Deluxe BLT Salad look forlorn and ordinary.
- Serve on large dinner plates, and dress with your favorite salad dressing. Silently compliment the genius who thought of putting together the magnificence of bacon with the tang of a fresh tomato, and the summery crunch of romaine. Eat it outside – the mosquitoes have not yet hatched.