Salty strips of bacon and a tart Champagne vinaigrette play against the layered richness of sweet char-grilled onions and creamy goat cheese. Feel free to mix and match the stacks, maybe even slip in a sliced peach or two.
1/2 cup butter
6 fresh thyme sprigs
1/3 cup bourbon
4 (8-oz.) sweet onions
1/4 cup Champagne vinegar
1 teaspoon grated sweet onion
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/3 cup olive oil
12 to 16 tomato slices
1/2 (4-oz.) package goat cheese, softened
16 fresh basil leaves
4 thick bacon slices, cooked and halved
4 cups firmly packed mixed salad greens with fresh herbs
How to Make It
Preheat grill to 300° to 350° (medium) heat. Cook first 3 ingredients in a 2-qt. heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, 2 minutes.
Cut each onion crosswise into 3 slices. Grill onion slices, covered with grill lid, 32 minutes, turning every 4 minutes and basting with bourbon mixture with each turn during last half of grill time. Remove from grill, wrap in aluminum foil, and let stand 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, whisk together vinegar and next 5 ingredients. Add oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until smooth. Whisk before serving.
Sprinkle tomato slices with salt and pepper to taste. Place 1 tomato slice (or stack 2) on each of 4 plates. Top each with 1 onion slice, and spread with 1 1/2 tsp. goat cheese. Top each stack with 2 basil leaves and 1 bacon piece. Repeat layers once. Top with remaining onions. Spoon 1 Tbsp. vinaigrette over each stack.
Toss greens with 3 Tbsp. vinaigrette, and serve immediately with Sweet Onion Stacks and remaining vinaigrette.
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