Warm Chicory Salad with Wild Mushrooms, Manchego and Pancetta Vinaigrette Recipe

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serves 6




  1. Pancetta Vinaigrette
  2. Put pancetta in a heavy bottomed pan to render slowly. About halfway through the cooking process, when the pancetta is starting to color; add 1 c of the olive oil. This will marry the flavors of the rendered pancetta fat and oil as well as keeping the finished pancetta vinaigrette from congealing. While cooking the pancetta, macerate the shallots and garlic in the two vinegars. When the pancetta has rendered fully and is crispy, quickly place the entire pancetta/oil mixture into the bowl with the vinegar mixture. As this must be done directly from the fire, be careful for the steam. Adjust with salt and pepper and/or oil and add thyme leaves before serving. Keep warm.
  3. Sauteed Mushrooms
  4. Clean mushrooms of stems and dirt. Heat a sauté pan, add oil, add mushrooms, season with salt and pepper, add one clove of garlic and a thyme sprig.Cook through. Remove garlic and thyme prior to serving. Set mushrooms aside.
  5. Currants
  6. Place ½ cup dried currants in sauce pan. Add 2 parts sherry wine and one part water to cover. Bring to boil. Remove from heat for 30 min. Strain out currants and reserve. Slowly reduce remaining fluid to syrup consistency. Reserve.
  7. To Serve:
  8. Place chicories and currants in metal mixing bowl. Heat mushroom mix and pancetta vinaigrette in a sauté pan. When hot, pour over the chicories, mix and adjust with salt and pepper. Divide among 6 plates. Top salad with shavings of Manchego cheese, chopped almonds and sherry drizzle. Serve.


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