healthy, fresh, and hearty are three words that describe what i look for in a salad. this salad embodies all three qualities. it also happens to use a dressing that was my maternal grandmother's recipe.
a grandmother that i never really got to know, although i know we would have gotten along splendidly. from all the stories i hear about her, i know i would have enjoyed being in the kitchen with her. perhaps we would cut butter into flour together to make her always perfect pie crust, or spread creamy peanut butter on soft white bread to make her peanut butter and butter sandwiches that i remember loving.
somehow i feel her with me when i flip through one of her cookbooks with her handwritten recipes in the "notes" section. i feel a little bit of her with me as i bite into the fresh, tender baby spinach with her spinach salad dressing - a creamy mix of mayonnaise with a hint of sweetness and a slight bite from red wine vinegar.
a perfectly hardboiled egg is the heartiness this salad needs to make it a main dish on a sunday evening with some garlic parmesan bread. this salad is simple enough to throw together on a lazy, warm evening yet impressive enough for entertaining company - something my grandmother did often and flawlessly.
4 cup baby spinach
2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
4 cherry or grape tomatoes, quartered
4 slices bacon, cooked until crispy
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tbs red wine vinegar
1/8 cup cugar
1/8 cup milk
pinch of salt
in a small bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients.
toss spinach with 2-4 tbs dressing and divide among 2 plates. top with red onion, tomatoes, crumbled bacon, and hard boiled eggs.