Frisee Salad with Beans, Goat Cheese and Warm Bacon Dressing
- 1 cup dried navy beans, soaked overnight in cold water
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed
- Fresh thyme sprigs
- 4 cups cold water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups crusty bread cubes
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus 2 teaspoons
- 1/4 pound thick sliced smoked bacon, cut into 3-inch strips
- 3 large shallots, thinly sliced
- 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- Fresh ground pepper
- 1/2 pound frisee, washed
- 1/2 pint yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/4 pound mild goat cheese crumbled
Drain and rinse off the beans. In a medium saucepan, combine beans, garlic, fresh thyme sprigs, and 4 cups cold water. Bring to a boil and skim off any foam. Simmer until tender. About 10 minutes before they are done, add the salt (about 1 teaspoon). Drain the beans and allow to cool room temperature. Throw away garlic and thyme.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Toss the bread cubes with 2 tablespoons or more of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Toast until golden. Fry bacon until crisp. Transfer to paper towels and drain. Add 2 teaspoons of olive oil to bacon pan. Saute the shallots in the olive oil until just colored light golden. Whisk in the vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Keep the dressing warm.
In a big bowl, toss the frisee, beans, bacon, toasted croutons, and tomatoes together. Add the dressings and toss. Plate each salad and sprinkle the crumbled goat cheese over top.