Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

January 24, 2022
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Warm potatoes on a bed of frisée and blue cheese (Salade tiède aux pommes de terre et aux lardons)

Browned nuggets of bacon, tender bites of potato, crunchy bitter greens and tangy, very tangy, warm dressing. Oh, yes, little morsels of pungent blue cheese, too! This is French bistro fare at its best. Make some as a first course for dinner, a meal in a bowl for supper or as a lunch salad.

12 oz. (375 g) new, kidney-shaped
potatoes, such as Pink Fir Apple or Jersey Royals

1 head frisée lettuce, cut into bite-sized pieces

2 tbsp. (30 ml) chives, chopped or 1 green onion, thinly sliced

3-4 oz. (90-125 g) blue cheese, such as Roquefort, aged Gorgonzola, Point Reyes Original Blue, Danish Blue, Cabrales or whatever your favourite blue cheese is, cut into small, half-bite morsels

2 tbsp. (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

1 tbsp. (15 ml) mild German or Dijon mustard

2-3 tbsp. (30-45 ml) white wine vinegar

1 tbsp. (15 ml) fresh tarragon, chopped or ½ tsp. (5 ml) dried tarragon

7 oz. (220 g) very lean lardons (diced bacon)

salt and freshly ground black pepper

Parboil the potatoes for about 10 minutes or until almost cooked through. Drain, remove from the heat and set aside.

Arrange the frisée on a big platter. Sprinkle with the chives, blue cheese of choice and half the olive oil.

Mix the mustard with the vinegar and tarragon, and set aside.

When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, rub the peels off if desired, then cut the potatoes into ¼-or-so-inch (6-mm) slices.

Heat the remaining olive oil in a large, heavy nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and let them brown in places, then push to the side and add the potatoes. Let the potatoes brown over medium-high heat, turning once or twice for even browning.

Meanwhile, drizzle half the mustard vinegar over the salad.

Push the bacon and potatoes to one side of the pan and add the remaining mustard and vinegar. Cook over high heat until the liquid reduces, turning the bacon and potatoes once or twice.

Pour the bacon and potatoes with the bit of dressing at the bottom of the pan over the salad. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, and serve immediately. Serves 4.

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