Bitter Greens Salad with Roasted Pears, Pomegranate Seeds & Candied Bacon

This recipe courtesy of Forking Fantastic authors Zora O'Neill & Tamara Reynolds


  • 2 big bunches arugula, watercress or sweet dandelion greens or a mixture thereof
  • 1/2 pound slab or thick-sliced bacon
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 3 pears, sliced in small wedges
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 lemon or 2 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper


  1. Prepare bacon by trimming off the rind and cutting the slab into 1/4-inch cubes. (If you're using sliced bacon, just cut the strips into 1/2-inch pieces.)
  2. Put the bacon in a small bowl with the brown sugar, crumbling the sugar to remove any lumps. Toss to evenly coat, then lay the bacon out in a single layer, but pressed close together, on a parchment- or wax paper-lined baking sheet with a rim.
  3. Turn the oven to 400-degrees F and slide the pan into the cold oven. Shart checking bacon after 25 minutes or so-- the sugar will melt and coat the bacon (don't be alarmed at home it's burning on the pan!)
  4. At 30 minutes or thereabouts, you should hit the sweet spot of melted sugar and slightly crispy bacon. Remove the bacon from the pan and set on a plate or paper bag (DO NOT PLACE IT ON A PAPER TOWEL) to cool.  Toss the greasy, sugary parchment paper and get the baking sheet under soap and hot water before any stray bits of sugar harden.
  5. With the oven still set to 400-degrees, drizzle pears with a tiny bit of oilive oil and place on a cookie sheet; roast until browned, 25-30 minutes, then set aside to cool.
  6. Give your greens at least three rinses as they tend to be very sandy. Dry the greens thoroughly, tear into pieces that are managable for your guests, then toss them into a large bowl.
  7. Right before you're ready to eat you can dress your salad in two ways:  1) drizzle on a small amount of olive oil and toss to coast the leaves, then add lemon juice to taste, and a hefty pinch of salt and pepper.  OR  2) make a dressing of 1/4 cup olive oil, 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar, a large handful of crushed pomegranate seeds and a pinch of salt and pepper; shake vigorously in a jar and pour over salad.
  8. Add cooled pears to salad, whole seeds from half a pomegranate and candied bacon and toss.  Serve immediately. 


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