PLT Salad (Prosciutto, Lettuce and Tomato)

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I don’t know who came up with the BLT sandwich, but they are geniuses. I love a great BLT, especially when heirloom tomatoes are fresh and ripe and we have great, fresh bread handy. Yum! In the absence of bread (or if you are trying to avoid bread), a BLT salad makes a delicious meal.

This salad started off as a BLT salad, with bacon, lettuce and tomato. Unfortunately, the “bacon” I received in my produce box last week was actually a cured side meat known here as “streak o’ lean”– meaning mostly fat, with a little streak of lean meat running through it. Now side meat is awesome for seasoning kale, collards, beans and lots of things, but it is not a replacement for bacon–especially in a salad. Had I known what I was getting, I would have stopped by Mae Farm and picked up some of their incredibly awesome bacon. Instead I lightly fried some prosciutto we already had and used that. I think I actually like the prosciutto better on a salad–it is light and very crunchy and has tons of flavor without all the fat of bacon. Score!

PLT Salad (serves 4)

  • 1 head organic butter lettuce
  • 1 large, organic heirloom tomato (we used German Johnson, which are quite large) or several small
  • 1 organic cucumber
  • 1 organic bell pepper
  • 4 fresh farm eggs
  • 4 slices prosciutto
  • Dressing of your choice
  1. Put eggs in a small pot and fill the pot with water to cover eggs by 1″. Cover and heat eggs over high heat until water boils.
  2. When water comes to a boil, shut off heat and let eggs sit for 12 minutes.
  3. While eggs cook, heat a small frying pan over medium heat. Add prosciutto slices and cook until crispy, about 4 minutes per side. Remove to a paper towel to cool and drain.
  4. Wash, trim and chop the lettuce into bite sized pieces. Put in a large salad bowl.
  5. Wash, trim and chop the tomato, cucumber, and bell pepper and add to the bowl.
  6. When eggs are done, drain them in a strainer and run cold water over the shells. When they are cool enough to handle, knock each egg lightly all over (I do this on the counter) to create small cracks all over the shell. Hold each egg under a stream of cool, running water and carefully peel the eggs. Set aside.
  7. Break the prosciutto into pieces and sprinkle them over the salad. Cut each egg in half and arrange around the salad.
  8. Serve immediately with dressing of your choice!

Creamy, Deviled Eggs

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Pretty eggs on a bed of carrot greens and sprinkled with chopped chives. Happy spring!

There is nothing quite like deviled eggs in the springtime. I absolutely love them. Their light, fresh taste is a wonderful antidote to all the heavy, warming foods of winter. And as far as recipes go, you can’t get much easier–just simmer, peel, mix and stuff. And if you have leftovers (you won’t)? Mash ’em all together and voila! Egg salad.

I’m on the lookout for a vintage deviled egg plate– they go against all my rules of the kitchen (no fussy equipment, no single purpose dish ware), but they are so cute that I have trouble resisting them. Usually the price acts as a deterrent all by itself!

I made these eggs for Easter supper. Sans a cute egg plate, I used carrot greens from fresh carrots to create a bed for my eggs so they wouldn’t slide off the tray. It would be a sad, sad Easter indeed to spend my morning cleaning up splattered egg remains. My solution turned out well and the greens looked pretty with the eggs, so maybe that will become a thing now. Or maybe I’ll just get a deviled egg plate.

Now, here’s the thing about deviled eggs, especially in the South. Everyone and their mama has a special way to make them. Paprika or without, pickles or without, celery or without, and don’t get me started on mayonnaise (I’m a Duke’s girl myself). So, with that in mind, this is MY recipe for deviled eggs, but if your mama or memaw has a cherished recipe, use that. Hers will always be better than anything you read on a blog.

I like my eggs simple and very creamy. I don’t add veggies for crunch, I don’t like pickle juice and I go light on the salt. I do, however, make an occasional exception for a bit of curry and a sprinkle of chives works, too. I like to pipe my filling into the shells, because I think it looks pretty, but spooning it in works just as well and tastes the same.

This is a recipe where eggs are the star, so now is the time to pay up and buy fresh, farm eggs from pasture raised chickens.

Creamy, Deviled Eggs (makes 24 egg halves)

  • 1 dozen eggs, preferably from a known farmer who lets chickens be chickens
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of good quality mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • Garnish: paprika, chopped chives, crumbled bacon
  1. Put eggs in a large stock pot. Very carefully fill the pot with cold water to cover the eggs plus 1″.
  2. Heat the pot over medium high heat until water comes almost to a boil (do not boil!).
  3. Reduce heat to medium and simmer eggs for 10 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Use a slotted spoon or spider to remove eggs from hot water to a colander. Put colander in the refrigerator for 10 minutes.
  5. To peel eggs: place the colander in a clean sink and let cold water run over eggs. One at a time, take an egg and gently tap it on the counter all around the surface of the egg. Holding the egg under the running water, gently peel the shell away from the egg white. The goal is to have a pretty egg white, but they will still taste good if some of the white peels away.
  6. Reserve peeled eggs in a large bowl.
  7. When all eggs are peeled, use a sharp paring knife to cut each egg in half lengthwise. Pop the yolks out and add them to a medium mixing bowl. Carefully put the egg whites on a prepared serving plate or deviled egg plate and set aside.
  8. To the yolks in the bowl, add 1/4 cup of mayonnaise, the mustard, vinegar and salt. Mix well, breaking up any large pieces of yolk. If the mixture is too dry, add mayonnaise until you have the desired consistency. Taste and correct for seasoning.
  9. Spoon filling into egg white halves or put filling in a piping bag and use a large star tip to pipe filling into egg halves.
  10. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika, chopped chives, crumbled bacon or whatever makes you happy.
  11. Keep chilled until ready to eat. Serve cold.
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