For the salad
1 large head iceberg lettuce, washed and cut into pieces
6 strips bacon
For the croutons
1 8-inch long ciabatta, cut into small cubes
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 sundried tomatoes, minced
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
2⁄3 teaspoon dried basil
1⁄8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 tablespoons olive oil
For the dressing
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
1 garlic clove, minced
1⁄4 teaspoon onion powder
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh chives, minced, or 1 tablespoon dried chives
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated or shredded
1. Heat oven to 375*F. Spread bacon over rack set in baking sheet. Bake until crispy, about 20 minutes. Likewise, you can chop the bacon and cook it up in a skillet. If doing so, pour bacon fat into baking sheet once bacon is finished.
2. Meanwhile, combine garlic, sundried tomatoes, salt, basil, cayenne and olive oil for croutons in food processor or mini-grinder.
3. Massage sundried tomato mixture into bread cubes, making sure each cube is coated.
4. When bacon is finished, remove rack from baking sheet and crumble bacon. Stir coated bread crumbs into bacon fat on baking sheet, reduce oven to 350*F and bake croutons for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until crispy and golden brown.
5. Mix all dressing ingredients together in large salad bowl.
6. Toss lettuce, bacon, and croutons in bowl with dressing.
A little while back, I made More Than Salad based on a recipe from Kayotic Kitchen. I was disappointed and felt that there was entirely too much going on with that salad and, as a result, the salad suffered for it. However, the dressing and croutons were really great and I wanted to revisit those ideas.
This version of the salad is much more basic and leaves out everything except the lettuce, bacon, dressing, and croutons. It was perfect. I could see adding red onion and cherry tomatoes if I had them, and a crispy lettuce mix would be nicer than iceberg, but this salad really worked and we all loved it. YUM! Sometimes simplifying is the best solution.
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