Greens tend to be relegated to slow, long cooking such as braising, but the more delicate of these, such as dandelion, can be wilted and used in a quick meal. Here the bitterness of dandelion greens is tamed by rich egg flavor and a sweet, syrupy balsamic vinegar reduction. Serve it all over a big piece of toasted country-style bread and you’ll see why this versatile dish has a place at the table any hour of the day.
What to buy: Dandelion greens are available year-round, but they’re best from midwinter through spring. If you’re having a hard time finding them or don’t like them, you can use beet greens, escarole, or arugula instead.
- 1Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium heat. When it shimmers, add the garlic and cook until it just starts to color, about 30 seconds.
- 2Add the dandelion greens and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook until just wilted, about 1 minute. Immediately remove from heat and divide the greens between 2 serving plates.
- 3Wipe out the pan, return it to medium heat, and add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. When it shimmers, add the eggs and fry until set, bubbly, and brown on the edges and the pan is almost dry, about 3 minutes.
- 4Carefully add the balsamic vinegar and cook until it is reduced and syrupy, about 2 minutes. Place 2 eggs on each mound of greens, evenly divide the vinegar reduction, season with freshly ground black pepper, and serve with toast.
Beverage pairing: Terredora di Paolo Falanghina Irpinia, Italy. The greens here present a touch of bitterness, the balsamic some pungency and sweetness, and the eggs some richness. Falanghina, a white grape from southern Italy, offers round, fresh fruit; a touch of herbal sharpness; and good body, hitting all the elements of this simple dish.