This might sound a little literary to you, but I promise you, that it’s going to be worth it.
During the spring semester in school, I took an English class that studied the American Gothics–particularly Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville, and Edgar Allen Poe. Hawthorne is my favoriteeeeeeeee Gothic writer. Probably of all times. I just kinda love him a lot. Plus a lot. And then some more. One of my friends, who also was a fellow classmate and “Hawthorneophile”, decided that the two of us should go camping sometime and bring Hawthorne along with us. We never did. Though we both thought it was a great idea.
One of the books we loved by Hawthorne (can I call him Mr. H???) is called The House of Seven Gables. Unlike most of Mr. H’s other works, this one wasn’t as dark, and it ended….well I don’t want to be a book spoiler, so I won’t tell you. Hopefully you’re curious to know how it ends, so you’ll go read it. DO IT! You’ll be glad you did. Mr. H. is amazing. Like I said, I kinda love him.
How does this relate to a Cobb Salad??? You’d never guess. And I wouldn’t have either, except that I’m the writer, so I don’t have to guess. I just write down what I think. And this is how my train of thought went.
I guess the other important “clue” you’d need (if you were trying to make the connection between Mr. H’s book and the Cobb Salad) is to know that I recently moved. Into a house that’s almost 100 years old. And do you know what the nickname of my new home is? Well, I overheard that some people used to call it the “house with 100 windows.” As soon as I heard that, I thought immediately of…yep, you guessed it….The House of Seven Gables.
Okay, so now that you have the two pieces of the puzzle, let’s put them together in a manner that’s most tasty and delicious.
Should I explain how I got from moving and my crazy book author crush to a cobb salad? Probably. Because, most of you probably didn’t make that jump in your brain between those two neurons across their connecting synapse. (Guys, I don’t even know if that’s the correct use of those two terms, but it makes me sound smart and I’m not getting a degree that’s related to the medical field….)
I made a Cobb Salad the first or second night that we stayed in the house. And that’s the connection. New house with lots of windows=reminded me of Mr. H. First dinner in new house=Cobb Salad. (2+2=4. Thoughts of Mr. H+Cobb Salad=the jumbled state of my mind.)
Unfortunately, I didn’t take pictures of all the steps. So, you won’t be able to see mouth watering pictures of bacon crisping in the pan, or juicy tomatoes being cut. Or Smooth bleu cheese. Or Crunchy red peppers. Haha, I’m the one with the waterin mouth right now. :)
The bacon I used…..YES! This is the “secret [no longer] ingredient” to this salad.
It’s black pepper coated bacon. If you want to know the brand and everything, so you can copy me exactly, it’s the Wright Brand, Natural Hickory Smoked Peppered Bacon. (And no, they’re not paying me to say that. They’ll probably never even know I wrote about them…and then dreamed about them.)
Here’s the recipe, please enjoy. :) Also, I love this recipe because it’s super easy and (aside from the mess that bacon makes when frying) it’s really not that messy. All you need is one skillet, a cutting board, and a knife. When you’re moving and unpacking boxes and missing lots of kitchen utensils, that’s important.
4 slices of peppered bacon
2 chicken breasts
Mixed lettuce, or any kind of lettuce/spinach/greens combination you’d like
4 or 5 mini bell pepper
1/2 bag of frozen corn–use fresh corn if you have any! :)
2 or 3 “handfuls” of cherry tomatoes (by this point, you should realize that I don’t really measure, sorry!!)
2 or 3 ozs. of bleu cheese
Dressing—olive oil, red wine vinegar, mustard
1. Fry your bacon in a large skillet. (If you use a lid and place it a little off of the rim, it’ll help keep the grease from going crazy. Also, cook the bacon on medium low.
2. While the bacon is frying, cut up your two chicken breasts into bite sized pieces. Put it back into the styrofoam container and that wash the cutting board and knives.
3. Remove the cooked bacon from the skillet, and put on a plate. Remove some of the bacon grease, but leave enough in the pan to keep it coated. Add the chicken. Since the bacon is peppered, you don’t need to add any pepper. Sprinkle some salt. Cook throughly.
4. While the chicken is cooking, cut up the bell peppers, avocado, and any other veggies you want (I had some mushrooms and carrots that I added.)
5. When the chicken is done, sauté the bell peppers and corn until tender.
6. Assemble the salad! Obviously put the lettuce down first, then the chicken and bacon. Next put the vegetables on, sprinkle the bleu cheese on top.
7. I liked my homemade dressing, but if you have a bottle of something you prefer, use that! Honestly, I didn’t measure out any of these ingredients. I just poured in Olive Oil until it “felt right” and then probably put a tsp or two of red wine vinegar. Then, I took a fork, and scooped out some mustard, mixing it in with the oil and vinegar.
8. Enjoy! It’s really quite a quick and easy salad to make! :)
P.S. I had it with the Triscuit Crackers–Sweet Potato and (Whatever else is in that cracker, yum!
Thankful for pepper and bacon!