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US Highbush - Blueberry and Spinach Salad with Hot Bacon Dressing


Yield: 4 portions

Source: Mythos Restaurant, Universal Studios, Orlando, FL., Executive Chef Steven Jayson and Chef Mark Wachowiak

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Chopped applewood-smoked bacon 4 slices
Chopped red onion 2 cups
Sugar 2 tablespoons
Sherry wine 1 ounce (2 tablespoons)
White balsamic vinegar 4 ounces (1/2 cup)
Cornstarch 1 tablespoon
Chicken broth 2 ounces (1/4 cup)
Salt 1/4 teaspoon
Ground black pepper 1/4 teaspoon
Baby spinach 12 ounces (about 5 quarts)
Fresh blueberries 8 ounces (about 2 cups)

Grape tomatoes, halved 4 ounces (about 1 cup)
Blue cheese crumbles 4 ounces (about 1 cup)
Bacon bits 2 ounces (about 1/4 cup)

Protein options:
Chicken, beef, shrimp or scallops, 6 ounces for each serving
well seasoned and grilled

1. In a skillet, over medium heat, sauté bacon until crisp, about 7 minutes. Add onion; cook, stirring, until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add sugar; cook, stirring, 1 minute. Deglaze pan with sherry.
2. Add vinegar and 6 ounces water; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.
3. Combine cornstarch and chicken broth; add to simmering liquid, stirring rapidly; continue cooking until dressing is thickened, about 3 minutes. Stir in salt and pepper. Use immediately or chill and reheat as needed. (Yield: about 12 ounces)
4. At service, in a large bowl, toss spinach with 8 ounces of the hot dressing.
5. On each of four large plates, divide dressed spinach (about 5 cups per plate). Sprinkle each serving with 1/2 cup blueberries, 1/4 cup tomatoes, 1/4 cup cheese crumbles and 1 tablespoon bacon bits.
6. According to order, place hot protein on side of salad. Serve immediately.
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