Mesclun Salad with Fried Shallots and Blue Cheese

Fried shallots add sweetness and a crouton-like crunch to this simple green salad from Chris Ainsworth, chef and owner of Saffron Mediterranean Kitchen in Walla Walla, Washington. Plus, they're delicious with a pungent blue cheese, like the Spanish Valdeon, which Ainsworth says has "a good crumble factor."


Slideshow:  More Great Salads


  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 10
KEY: Frying, Dinner Party, Father's Day, Salads, Side Dishes, Fast, Make Ahead, Vegetarian

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  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 7 large shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 pound mesclun
  • 1/4 pound blue cheese, such as Valdeon, crumbled

How to make this recipe

  1. In a large skillet, heat 1/4 inch of vegetable oil until shimmering. Add half of the sliced shallots and fry over moderate heat, stirring a few times, until they are browned and crisp, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fried shallots to paper towels to drain. Fry the remaining sliced shallots.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk the olive oil with the sherry vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Add the mesclun and blue cheese to the bowl and toss. Sprinkle the fried shallots over the mesclun salad and serve right away.

Make Ahead

The fried shallots can be stored in an airtight container overnight.

Contributed By Photo © Cedric Angeles Published April 2010

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