Smothered Lettuce

serves 6-8

8 slices hickory-smoked bacon, cut into 1/2-inch wide strips

2 1/2 Tablespoons cider vinegar

2 teaspoons sugar

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

1 1/2 pound head of iceberg lettuce, cored and coarsely chopped

6 medium scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced including some green tops

1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

In a large heavy skillet, fry the bacon over medium heat until brown and crisp, about 10-12 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, remove the bacon and drain on paper towels.  Pour all the drippings from the skillet and measure out 1/4 cup.  If the drippings do not measure out to 1/4 cup, round out with a neutral oil.  Return the drippings to the skillet and add the vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper if using.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally.

Quickly mound the lettuce, scallions, and parsley in a large bowl.  Pour the hot dressing evenly over the greens, add the reserved bacon, and toss well.  Serve at once.  Enjoy!

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