Grilled Lettuce With Sweet and Sour Bacon Vinaigrette – Recipe


By Omar Allibhoy of Tapas Revolution

Serves 4 as a Starter


  • ½ Red Onion, sliced
  • 4 tbsp Sherry Vinegar
  • 50g (2oz) Smoked Pancetta or Bacon, diced
  • A pinch of Sweet Pimentón (sweet smoked paprika)
  • 1 tbsp of Honey
  • 2 heads of Little Gem Lettuce, Sliced in half lengthways
  • 4 tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • A pinch of Sea Salt

“This is one of my mum’s dishes. She has always been famous in our family for her salads – which she brings to all family gatherings. I love the concept of hot salads, particularly in winter time when you need something to warm you up.”


  1. Place the red onion in a small bowl and pour the sherry vinegar over the top. Set aside to marinate.
  2. In a small pan over a high heat, dry-fry the pancetta or bacon until crisp. Sprinkle over the sweet pimentón and then the honey. After 30 seconds, pour over the sherry vinegar and onions to deglaze the pan. Turn them heat off under the pan and leave to sit.
  3. Heat a separate pan over a high heat until it is as hot as possible. Place the lettuce halves in the pan, cut sides down, and cook for 1 minute, then drizzle with the olive oil and continue to fry for no longer than 1 minute. They will darken quite quickly without losing their raw texture.
  4. Place the cooked lettuces on a serving platter, grilled sides up, and season with a little salt. Pour the hot vinaigrette over the top and enjoy.

This recipe is taken from ‘Spanish Made Simple: Foolproof Spanish Recipes for Every Day’ by Omar Allibhoy of Tapas Revolution (published by Quadrille £20)
Photography: Martin Poole


Leave a reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.