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Author Notes: I love a super-satisfying salad, and this one has all the right elements: Crispness from the spinach, richness from the bacon, sweetness from the figs, and earthiness from the mushrooms. I made it again and added a few slices of grilled queso blanco, which made a deliciously creamy addition. —Erin McDowell
- 3 strips bacon
- 3 teaspoons brown sugar
- black pepper, as needed
- 1 large fig, cut into thirds (or 2 small figs, quartered)
- 3/4 cup mushrooms, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh roughly chopped herbs (I used rosemary and thyme)
- salt and pepper, as needed
- 3 cups spinach
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 3 thin slices queso blanco (optional)
- Coat the bacon lightly with brown sugar, then season with pepper. Wrap the bacon slices around the figs. Place onto a baking sheet.
- In a small bowl, toss the mushrooms with olive oil, herbs, salt, and pepper to coat. Transfer to the other end of the baking sheet. Place the sheet into a 350 degree oven and roast until the bacon is crisp and the mushrooms are tender.
- In a small bowl, toss the spinach with olive oil and vinegar. (If using, lightly brush the queso blanco with olive oil. Grill in a hot grill pan (or saute pan) until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side.)
- Add the warm mushrooms to the spinach and toss to combine. Top with the bacon wrapped figs (and grilled queso blanco), and serve.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Fig Recipe