This bright, fresh, and smoky salad is a kaleidoscope of flavors and textures. Every forkful is a different combination of sweet, sour, salty, bitter, crunchy, chewy, rich, and smoky.
For the Lemon and Shallot Vinaigrette:
- 4 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp lemon zest
- 1/4 cup chopped shallot
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1/4 tsp salt and ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
For the Sesame Crunch:
- 3/4 cup roasted, salted almonds, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup sesame seeds
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon each salt and ground black pepper
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 tbsp egg white, lightly beaten with a fork
For the Salad:
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lb thick sliced bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 lb radishes, washed, ends trimmed, sliced into 1/4-inch pieces
- 2 tart apples, core removed, chopped into small bite size pieces
- 6-8 cups chopped romain lettuce
- 2 cups Perfect Roast Chicken or Rotisserie Chicken
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
Make the Lemon and Shallot Vinaigrette:
- Add all the ingredients except the olive and sesame oil to a bowl and whisk to combine. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, then the sesame oil. Set aside while you prepare the sesame crunch and salad.
Make the Sesame Crunch:
- Heat oven to 375 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Toss all ingredients around in a bowl until everything is well coated with the egg white. Dump the mixture onto the baking sheet and spread out into an even layer.
- Bake for 10-20 minutes, until fragrant and light golden brown.
- Let cool, then break into chunks.
Make the Salad:
- Heat oil in a large skillet set over medium heat. Add the bacon to the hot skillet and cook, stirring frequently, until crisp. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon from the pan to a paper towel lined baking sheet to drain.
- Remove all but about 1 tablespoon of fat from the skillet and return to medium-high heat. Add the sliced radishes and cook stirring occasionally, until they are golden brown, and beginning to blacken in a few spots. Dump out onto a plate or bowl.
- To assemble the salad: Pile the Romain lettuce into a big bowl or divide onto individual serving plates. Top with radishes, bacon, apples, and chicken. Pour dressing over the salad, and top with a sprinkle of sesame crunch and fresh chopped basil.