I’m sure I’ve mentioned that it seems we are always on diets. I know it doesn’t look like it, but it’s true. Lately Manservant has been really into the 4 Hour Body. if you aren’t familiar with it, it is actually quite interesting. Not that I don’t think Tim Ferris is a bit over the top, but some of his theories are based in science. Now I was never very good at science and I’m not very good at diets, but Manservant is really into it. I admit that I’m not quite so engaged, but I’ll do most anything to help the cause. It was only yesterday I found myself, driving him to the airport in a mad rush, as he sat in the passenger seat, throwing at least 8 kinds of vitamins and supplements into plastic containers to take with him to Sweden. I only hope they don’t confiscate them at the airport.
Basically this is a lean protein diet with beans, some vegetables and no fruit or white stuff. The best part, according to Manservant, is that he gets one free day a week to eat and drink anything. He says it is for resetting the thermostat. One problem, out of many, that I have with this diet, besides the fact that it is a diet-though it is supposed to be a lifestyle- is that it once I go off, it is hard to go back. Manservant loves it though, but I think he might be resetting the thermostat a little too often!
His latest gimmick that he actually won in a Jeopardy type contest in Las Vegas, is one of those new fitness bracelets. He felt it actually made him “fit in” on his trip to California. Whatever. The good news is that it tracks his steps and buzzes him when he is sitting to long. It even tracks his sleep which he is horrible at. Anyway, I now know how many steps it is to the “Watch for Coyotes” sign so if I do that 4 times a day I’ve got my 10,000 steps in. And if I mow the lawn, I get even more, plus I suppose brownie points.
This salad came about because I go so tired of watching Manservant open a can of beans and pour them over spinach and top them with a fried egg. I know it is good for him, but it just didn’t seem appetizing to me. Oh and he tops all that with salsa. Well, this salad might not be quite on the diet, but it is pretty good, diet or not. Though I am naming this a breakfast salad, it would be good any time of day. Manservant loved it, but he did ask for one more egg on his, which was easily accomplished.
My breakfast salad consists of leafy green spinach which is big on this diet, and because Manservant hates kale, that’s a good thing. I then load it up with grilled bacon (yes, on the grill, grilled bacon) which gives it a great extra smoky taste. Add buratta and a fried egg, some bright red tomatoes and pretty chive flowers, but those are totally optional. Seems like a lot of protein to me. I’m not sure the balsamic maple vinaigrette is diet worthy, but I can guarantee that it would make any salad a hit. It is awesome stuff. I happen to use this great maple balsamic vinegar that I buy at the EVOO store in downtown Littleton. I go through it so quickly that now I need more. And no, I’m not being paid to say this, but I just love their stuff. I’d love one of everything!
So whether you wear one of those bracelets or not, this salad will work in any diet. It keeps you full for a long while. And you could even eat it for breakfast!
Bacon and Egg Breakfast Salad with Balsamic Maple Vinaigrette
Time to make: About 20 minutes
Maple Balsamic Dressing:
3 pressed or finely minced garlic cloves
1/2 t whole grain mustard
2 T maple balsamic vinegar or 2 T balsamic vinegar and 2 t maple syrup
2 grinds of black pepper
3 T olive oil
1 c chopped tomatoes
1 T finely chopped onion
1 t olive oil
1 grind black pepper
1 T chopped basil
1 pinch salt
4 slices thick bacon, grilled or cooked to your liking
1/2 c chive flowers (Totally optional!)
1 t olive oil
1/4 t salt
2 fried eggs
6 c fresh washed spinach
1 buratta ball, split into two
Combine 3 mashed garlic cloves, mustard, vinegar and pepper in a small measuring cup. Whisk well. Slowly whisk in 3 T olive oil until emulsified. Add salt to taste. Set aside.
Combine tomatoes with onions, olive oil, pepper, basil and salt. Set aside.
To grill bacon: I place bacon strips on a paper plate, set on a glass plate, and cover with another paper plate and render out the fat for 3 minutes in the microwave.Then take the strips of bacon and place them on a grill that has been preheated to high. After placing on grill turn grill to low. Cook the strips, watching carefully and turning every 45 seconds or so. This should take about 4 or 5 minutes, but I like my bacon crisp!
Toss the chive flowers with the oil and salt. Place them on a grill rack and cook them on low until golden brown, about 3-4 minutes.
Cook the fried eggs to your liking.
Place spinach in a bowl and toss with a few tablespoons of dressing or more if you want. Top with some tomatoes and buratta. Top the buratta with a fried egg. Garnish with bacon and chive flowers. Drizzle with more dressing if needed. Serve with toast if desired!