Lisa Smith, the executive chef for Central Market supermarkets in Texas, was visiting us once at our farm in New York and became transfixed by our incredible eggs. One morning we took her to Michael London’s bakery in Saratoga Springs for breakfast and she was blown away by their croissants, calling them the best she had ever had. She bought a few and once we were home said to us, “Guys, today you rest. I’m making egg salad for lunch.” Of course, Lisa’s egg salad wasn’t just egg salad – it was creamy, warm and sublime. Piled on the beautiful croissant and punctuated by the slight bite and crunch of arugula and smoky country bacon, the salad was basic country food at its finest. To have an experience as memorable as ours, buy the best croissants you can find in your city or town.
- 8 strips good quality thick-cut bacon
- 16 leaves baby arugula
- 8 large eggs at room temperature
- 4 butter croissants, halved
- 8 cups water
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise, homemade or any high-quality brand, like Hellman’s
- Sea salt to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350°F (approx 175°C). Lay the bacon on a rimmed baking sheet and cook in the oven for 10 to 20 minutes depending on how crisp you like it.
- Remove the pan from the oven and use tongs to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool. Set aside.
- Reduce oven temperature to 200°F (approx 93°C).
- Pour water and vinegar into a large pot and bring to a boil over high heat.
- Reduce heat to medium and use a slotted spoon to gently lower the eggs into the boiling water. Simmer the eggs (reduce the heat to medium-low, if necessary) for exactly 12 minutes.
- While the eggs cook, set the croissants on a rimmed baking sheet and place them in the oven to warm (reassemble the croissant halves so they are whole – you don’t want the interior to get toasty and hard).
- Transfer the cooked eggs to a sieve and place them under cold running water until they’re cool enough to handle (you don’t want the eggs to be cold – they need to be warm).
- Peel the eggs and place them in the bowl of a food processor and purée until they’re creamy. Add mayonnaise and some salt and pepper and continue to process until the mixture is well combined.
- Divide the deviled egg salad between the bottom half of each croissant. Top each with 4 pieces of arugula and 2 pieces of bacon.
- Cover with the top half of the croissant and eat immediately.