In a bid to get children to eat healthier, ‘The Cook At Home Dad’ shares tips and recipes he creates for and with his kids.
When asked that inevitable daily question, “Hey Dad, what’s for dinner?”, I never would have dared advise my girls that we were having salad. That is, until I came up with this recipe for ‘Grilled B.L.T. Salad’ – yes grilled salad! There are only two words to describe this meal: surprisingly perfect! The caramelizing of the lettuce and balsamic vinegar lend to a deep, rich, sweet/savory, and full-bodied flavor. I was literally floored when I took my first bite. There is something about the way that “grilled” flavor permeates the flesh of the Romaine and elevates it to the level of art!
I initially got the kids involved with one word: bacon. I further enticed them by encouraging them to help me “burn this whole head of lettuce on the grill.” They helped marinate and season everything. They chopped and stood by my side as we watched this unlikely method of making a salad turn our sad-looking lettuce into one of our family’s great summer must-haves!
Give it a whirl at your place with your kids, and have the camera ready to snap their reactions as they bite into it – I promise even my most finicky critic went in for a second bite!
- 2 Hearts of Romaine
- 8 slices of cooked bacon, crumbled (for a healthier version, use turkey bacon)
- 1 package of grape or cherry tomatoes, halved (not pictured)
- 1/4 C reduced fat bleu cheese crumbles
- 1/4 C chopped walnuts
- 2 T extra virgin olive oil
- 2 T balsamic vinegar
- 1 t garlic powder
- salt and fresh ground black pepper
- Fill a clean kitchen sink 3/4 full with cold water and 1 T vinegar.
- Place Romaine hearts in sink for at least 15 minutes (this will remove any debris).
- Rinse the Romaine well and dry thoroughly.
- Carefully slice the Romaine hearts in halve lengthwise and discard any leaves that get disconnected (keep the bottom on).
- Drizzle each Romaine half with 1/2 T olive oil and 1/2 T balsamic vinegar (front and back).
- Sprinkle garlic powder and liberally salt and pepper the Romaine halves.
- Place on a medium low grill (about 300 degrees) cut side down.
- Grill for 3-4 minutes being sure to check frequently to ensure they do not char.
- Flip and cook an additional 3-4 minutes.
- Cut the bottom core off each Romaine heart.
- Top with bacon, tomatoes, walnuts and bleu cheese.
Goes perfect with a Pouilly-Fouisse by Jardot. Can be served warm or cold. ENJOY!
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Photo: Courtesy of the Author.
Originally appeared on The Cook At Home Dad. Reprinted with permission.