Salads in warm weather are always a hit. My daughter loves Caesar Salad and so do I. The tang of the lemon juice, garlic, and the saltiness of the background note of the anchovy is a delight for the senses. I love this salad in so many ways. Ina Garten often mentions how empowering it is to master a recipe and change it up with various ingredients. This is exactly what I do with Caesar Salad. I often top it with grilled chicken, steak, fish, or even mushrooms. It is so hearty with toasted garlic bread and I often serve it with a glass of chilled white wine or a glass of iced tea. In either case, it’s a delicious meal and is easy to prepare. It’s especially good in spring and summer. I love it with homemade dressing, but in a pinch I use a quality bottled dressing like Girards Caesar Dressing. Dressing recipe courtesy of chef Eric Ripert.
1 Head Romaine Lettuce
1 Pkg of Croutons (or make your own)
1/4 c Shaved Parmesean Cheese
Fresh Caesar Salad Dressing:
- 2 large egg yolks
- 4 anchovy filets, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, sliced
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
In the jar of a blender, combine yolks, anchovy, garlic, lemon juice, mustard, and season with cracked pepper. With the blender on medium speed, slowly drizzle in olive oil until well incorporated; season dressing with salt.
Season the chicken, fish, steak or portabello mushrooms and grill. Reserve.
Rinse/wash the Romaine lettuce discard bruised 1/4 inch of the top of the head and the bottom core. Slice head in about 1 inch strips and dry in a salad spinner or use a clean dish towel to dry after rinsing if you don’t have a spinner, just be sure the leaves are dry so the delicious dressing sticks to each and every leaf. Refrigerate the lettuce so that it gets crisp and cold while you make the dressing.
Toss the salad with the dressing and shaved parmesean. Arrange on the plate. Add sliced grilled mushroom, chicken or steak. If you are using fish, do not cut, just place the filet on top of the plate. Enjoy.
Variations: I have added baby spinach, grape tomatoes, and chopped crisp bacon to this salad.