When my Grandma Hallie passed in 1984, I mourned MANY things about this wonderful woman. But it wasn't until the next spring, when leaf lettuce came up, that I realized I had never asked her how to make Wilted Lettuce.
Over the next 30 years, I would try one recipe after another, but none of them were quite right until a lovely lady named Dixie posted a recipe for what she called Hot Vinegar Dressing. This time, it WAS the right dressing, the one I remember so well! Thank you, Dixie, for giving this special dish back to my family. Shared with her gracious permission. =^..^=
If you are making Wilted Lettuce, put the eggs on to cook, then wash the leaf lettuce carefully. I remove all hard parts, like the spine, of the leaves. Put the leaves in a salad spinner to remove the excess water, or allow the leaves to drain in a colander lined with paper towels. Chop some onion and set aside. When the eggs have cooked about 15 minutes in boiling water, drain the water, and refill the pan with cool water to allow the eggs to cool. Assemble the lettuce leaves and chopped onion in a large salad bowl. Chop the eggs and set aside. THEN prepare the Hot Bacon Dressing.
Fry the diced bacon until crispy, then remove the bacon to a paper towel to drain. Reserve about 1 1/2 Tablespoons of bacon grease in the skillet and remove the rest.
While the diced bacon is frying, stir together the sugar, flour, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
Add the sugar mixture to the 1 1/2 Tablespoons of hot bacon grease, cooking over medium heat and stirring.
Add the vinegar and water and stir constantly, bringing it to a boil. Boil about 2 minutes, until slightly thickened. (If too thick, add a little water.)
Remove from heat and cool until warm. Pour over lettuce & onion, tossing the salad until coated and wilted. (The hotter the dressing, the more it will wilt. Your call.) Top with the chopped hardboiled eggs and crispy diced bacon. Dinner is served! =^..^=