This is one of my all time favorite classic french bistro salads. So easy to put together and a meal in itself or a starter, all depends on how much you serve yourself. You want to use a nice curly endive salad with tender, light green centers. Do not use the harder dark green outer leaves. For the lardons, you may use bacon or pancetta and traditionally the egg is a soft poached egg. Clearly as you can see from my photograph, I did not use a poached egg. A poached egg is way better as when you cut into it, it runs out onto the salad, croutons and lardons and is so good, but I had two hard-boiled eggs in my refrigerator that I wanted to use, so I used that instead.

Serves 4


4 handfuls frisée / curly endive
200g lardons
4 eggs
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 small echalote, diced finely
Salt & pepper
3 Slices good country style bread, crusts removed


Wash and dry the salad and place in a large bowl
Heat some olive oil in a saute pan and saute the lardons until crispy
Remove them with a slotted spoon, retaining the oil for the croutons, place on a paper towel and add to the salad
Cut the bread into small cubes and gently saute them for a few minutes until evenly brown and crunchy, add to the salad
Boil water and poach your eggs to your liking, about 3 to 4 minutes
Meanwhile make the vinaigrette by adding all the other ingredients together and whisking to form a smooth emulsion
Add the vinaigrette to the salad, lardons and croutons and toss to coat
Add the poached egg
Enjoy! A little bit of France on a plate.