The unconventional morning meal ~ Breakfast Salad with Cinnamon Toast Croutons and Maple Vinaigrette. Who knew a salad for breakfast could be so good?
I’ve noticed a trend here in Asheville and on the menus of other popular breakfast joints around the country ~ salad for breakfast. Before you turn up your nose, let me clarify. These breakfast salads are not bland leafy side-salads with bottled ranch dressing, but bold hearty meals. A good breakfast salad encompasses everything that makes breakfast so appealing: carbs, eggs, pork-fat and sweet accents.
After exploring these salads at several favorite breakfast joints, I decided to work on my own version.
Served on Villeroy & Boch “Aureus” China.
First, I wanted to put my family’s favorite morning flavors into the salad. That way, it would be hard for the kids to resist. My version had to include: bacon, maple syrup, cinnamon toast and eggs.
The Cinnamon Toast Croutons were the first inspiration. Truly, I could eat a whole pan of these babies. In fact, it’s important not to make them too far in advance, or there will not be any left for the salad. Maple Vinaigrette provides a sweet and poppy essence with apple cider vinegar and Dijon mustard. The addition of candied nuts and dried cherries offers a granola-like quality.
Prepare your morning eggs just the way you like them, and pile it all on a bed of crisp baby spinach. THIS, my friends, is a great way to start the day!
Eat breakfast like a King, lunch like a Prince, and dinner like a Pauper. ~ Adelle Davis
Breakfast Salad with Cinnamon Toast Croutons and Maple Vinaigrette
Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
For the Cinnamon Toast Croutons:
6 cups of French bread cubes
3 Tb. melted butter
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Pinch of salt
For the Maple Vinaigrette:
¼ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup vegetable oil
1 Tb. apple cider vinegar
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
½ tsp. salt
Pepper to taste
For the Breakfast Salad:
1 cup candied nuts
¾ cup dried cherries
12 oz. bacon, cooked and crumbled
6 packed cups baby spinach
12 eggs, prepared to order
For the Cinnamon Toast Croutons: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lay the bread cubes out on a rimmed baking sheet. Mix the melted butter, sugar, cinnamon and salt together and drizzle over the bread cubes. Toss and bake for 5-10 minutes until toasted.
For the Maple Vinaigrette: Whisk all the ingredients together until smooth. Set aside.
Cook and drain the bacon.
Prepare the eggs to your liking—scrambled, poached, sunny-side-up.
Prepare each salad plate with a heaping cup of baby spinach, topped with cinnamon toast croutons, candied nuts, dried cherries, and crumbled bacon. Then top each with 1-2 eggs and drizzle with maple vinaigrette!
Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!
I’d like to point out, I used my new favorite skillet preparing this breakfast salad. Not long ago I was introduced to ManPans Products. Admittedly, when I first picked them up, my thought was that they were too light-weight to conduct heat well. I was also a little leery of “non-stick” surfaces, so I did a bit of research (and testing) and am thrilled to report my findings.
ManPans products are an anomaly. Not only do they conduct heat well, they conduct it so well, you can actually turn your heat down to save energy. They are “Green” in other ways as well. When heated, they release absolutely no toxins into your food, providing safer and better tasting dishes. ManPans are made here in the USA. They are extremely sturdy, almost impossible to scratch or chip and easy to clean. I’m impressed, to say the least.
So, I’m proud to say that one lucky ASP reader will WIN the same 10 inch ManPans Fry Pan I use.
How to Enter: ~CLOSED~
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*For US residents only–sorry international friends!
Winner selected and announced August 1st. WINNER: KRISTEN M.