2½ cups cubed whole-grain country bread or rolls (½-inch pieces)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp sea salt, divided
4 1/2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
4 strips all-natural turkey bacon, no added nitrates or nitrites, chopped (into ½-inch strips)
1/2 shallot, minced
1/4 cup + 1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar, divided
1½ tsp Dijon mustard
1 bunch frisée lettuce, leaves torn
1/2 large bulb fennel, cored and thinly sliced
4 large eggs
Ground black pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400˚F. Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Add beets and cook until fork-tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly. Trim, peel and cut into 1/3-inch-thick slices. Set aside.
Meanwhile, line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, toss together bread, garlic and 1/8 tsp salt and 1½ tsp oil. Spread on baking sheet and bake until golden brown, 9 to 11 minutes. Set croutons aside.
Meanwhile, in a small nonstick skillet on medium, heat 1 tsp oil. Add bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a large bowl.
In same skillet, heat remaining 2 tsp oil on medium. Add shallot and cook, stirring often, until slightly softened, about 2 minutes. Add ¼ cup vinegar and simmer, scraping up browned bits from bottom of skillet, until reduced by one-third, about 1½ minutes. Whisk in mustard and scrape into bowl with bacon. Add lettuce and fennel and toss to coat.
Meanwhile, fill a large, deep skillet with 3 inches water. Add remaining 1 tbsp vinegar and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low to maintain a gentle simmer. In a small bowl, break 1 egg and gently slip into simmering water. Repeat with remaining eggs and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until desired doneness. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper towel–lined plate.
6. To serve, top each salad with croutons, beets and 1 egg. Sprinkle with remaining 1/8 tsp salt and pepper.
Who says French toast has to be sweet? Here, savory mushrooms are cooked with butter, thyme and milk and spooned over caraway rye French toast for a satisfying breakfast-for-dinner. New to poaching eggs? Learn how easily at cleaneating.com/howtopoach.