Modern Salade Lyonnaise With Leeks, Lardons, and Oeuf Mollet From 'Daniel'


[Photograph: Thomas Schauer]

Daniel Boulud's modern salade Lyonnaise from his new cookbook Daniel is not a dish he serves in his restaurants. Instead it appears at his home table or (I suspect) more often at dinner parties. It is part of a collection of more casual, family-style recipes in the back of his otherwise restaurant-centric cookbook.

Still, despite its air of informality, this dish is highly composed. He simmers baby leeks, blends a puréed carrot vinaigrette, sears chicken livers, fries bacon, and boils six-minute eggs. Despite all of these elements, the plate comes together with relative ease—I served the salad at room temperature, so there was no rushing around at the last minute.

Why I picked this recipe: Wanting a simpler dish, I turned to this refined yet not difficult twist on the Lyonnaise bistro salad.

What worked: While I was pleased with each of the elements of the salad, I loved the carrot vinaigrette the most. It tamed the livers, added earthiness to the bacon, and brightened the tender leeks. I'd eat that vinaigrette on anything.

What didn't: No problems here.

Suggested tweaks: The six-minute egg is wonderful and glamorous, but if you'd like to poach or even fry your egg, you certainly could. Just be sure to leave the yolk runny.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Daniel: My French Cuisine to give away this week.