Serves 4
The wedge salad is one of life's great pleasures. If you've ever been to an old-time diner or a classic steak house, you know what we mean. But in our ever-lasting efforts to make dishes more creative and healthy, we offer this twist on the original. Instead of only iceberg lettuce, try wedging other nutritious salad greens, such as romaine and radicchio.
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vinegar, such as cider or sherry vinegar
  • 4 to 6 strips thick-cut bacon
  • 4 to 6 long baguette slices (sliced diagonally)
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1/2 romaine heart
  • 1/2 head radicchio
  • 1/3 small head iceberg lettuce
  • 1 recipe Buttermilk Chive Dressing (recipe follows)
  • 3 ounces crumbled blue cheese
Heat a wide frying pan over medium-high heat. Pour 1 tablespoon of the oil into the pan and heat until shimmering. Add the onion slices and a pinch of salt and stir. Arrange the onion evenly over the pan and reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. When the slices of onion begin to show color, drizzle the maple syrup and vinegar over them and stir to coat. Continue cooking, stirring every minute, for about 10 minutes, raising the heat slightly in the last minute to help crisp the onions.

Remove the onion from the pan and spread it out evenly on a plate to cool, using two forks to separate the strands as much as possible.

Cook the bacon over low heat until crisp. Set aside on paper towels. When it is completely cooled, crumble the bacon.

Brush the baguette slices with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and rub them with the garlic. Toast under the broiler, in a toaster oven, or on a grill until golden brown.

Remove the root end from the lettuces, and cut each piece into 4 wedges. Place one wedge of each on four individual salad plates. Dress each plate with 1/4 cup of the dressing. Top with the fried onions, bacon pieces, and crumbled blue cheese. Garnish with a piece of toasted bread.

Buttermilk Chive Dressing
Makes 8 ounces (1 cup)

  • 2/3 cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a 12-ounce or larger lidded jar, combine all of the ingredients with a generous amount of black pepper.

Shake aggressively until the dressing is well combined. Taste for seasoning. Store in a tightly sealed jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Shake well before using.

From The Kitchn Cookbook by Sara Kate Gillingham and Faith Durand, Clarkson Potter 2014.