Guest Blog: Fresh ‘n’ Crispy BLT Salad

Ok, I know a recipe for a salad in the middle of winter may not grab the attention of even the most avid readers, but please bear with me for a moment.

In Scotland, at this time of year, we’re still in full-on hibernation mode. The central heating is on full whack, we’re never more than 5 metres away from a cosy blanket and mealtimes still heavily feature comfort food. Take a wander across the pond on the other hand (lets say to Southern California?) and well, mealtimes are a little different for them. Right now it’s a balmy 22C and salads are completely acceptable. I imagine they never have the problem of storing the winter gear and spending endless months living in Ugg boots & thick jumpers. ESI Logo

Enter Brooke, the lovely blogger & photographer from Eat Sleep Inspire, and her sunny Californian take on the classic BLT. Brooke is a big fan of baking, cooking and photography and one glance at her blog, inspired by the flavours of the Californian coast, will have you daydreaming of jetting off to the states for a spot of winter sun.

While neither Brooke nor I are trying to tear you Scots away from your stew & mashed potatoes, I reckon this fresh & crispy BLT salad could still tempt. February is, after all, the month where we emerge from our hibernation, blinking into the sunlight, and examine our waistlines with concern.

This is a carb-free, throw-together kinda salad which you can knock up in minutes. Try it for lunch or serve it up as a side dish for your evening meal. Or just use it as a base and play around with the ingredients to suit your tastes. Not a fan of blue cheese? Then try crumbled feta or goats cheese. This is the kinda laid back Californian cooking I can get on board with, despite the winter kick in the air.

Over to Brooke….

Fresh & Crispy BLT Salad

Lately I’ve been trying to make some delicious salads to satisfy my ‘health kick. I know BLTs may not be what someone would call an ‘ideal’ healthy food, but hey, don’t we all love a good BLT? And the best part is, it’s a BLT salad!

I have to admit, I’m a sucker for anything with bacon (who isn’t?) but like many people I’m also looking for ways to eat healthy yet still enjoy the meal.

We’ve all tried the juicing, the whole grains and the salads but sometimes they just don’t satisfy. This salad however I promise you, will. Just wait until you get a bite of crisp, fresh lettuce, onion, blue cheese, bacon and low-fat ranch dressing, I reckon you’ll ditch those healthy fads and convert.

This will serve 4.

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Ingredients 1

Cut the lettuce into quarters and remove the small inner section so each quarter forms a bowl shape.

Grill the bacon until crisp and slice into small pieces.

Dice the tomatoes and chop the onion. Scatter the tomato, onion, blue cheese and bacon into each lettuce quarter. Then drizzle a little ranch dressing over each one.

Make it Veggie: Cut out the bacon and replace with a little shaved parmesan or other hard cheese.

Make it Vegan: Replace the dressing with Extra Virgin Rapeseed (or Olive) oil. Replace the cheese with Vegan cheese or chunks of Tofu.