Back to the Basics: Caesar Salad

February 19, 2013

Knowing how to assemble your own Caesar salad is a mark a good home cook.  This restaurant staple is as easy to throw together at home as it is to order off a menu.  The traditional Caesar dressing made with anchovies, Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, and olive oil is whipped in a blender.  Many recipes will call for an egg yolk but this one uses a hard boiled egg instead to give the dressing body.  This simple Caesar salad is perfect with a grilled chicken breast or grilled jumbo shrimp.

Caesar Salad



1 loaf Italian bread
1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
4 cloves garlic, divided
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
salt and pepper, to taste
3 anchovy filets
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
3 inches romaine lettuce hearts, cut 2-inch pieces
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

To make the croutons, cut the crust off the bread and cut the loaf into cubes.

Place the cubes in a large mixing bowl.

In a small pan over medium heat, add the oil, 1 clove of minced garlic, and oregano.

Cook for two minutes, giving the pan a shake often.

Pour the flavored oil over the bread cubes and toss.

Season with salt and pepper.

Spread the bread cubes in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.

In a blender, add the lemon juice, remaining garlic cloves, anchovy fillets, mustard, lemon, vinegar, Worcestershire, hard-boiled egg, salt, and pepper.

Process until garlic is well minced and a paste forms.

With the blender still running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Taste for seasonings.

Put the lettuce in a large bowl.

Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss.

Add the cheese and croutons and toss well.

Season with more black pepper to taste.

Serve immediately, topping with the rest of the anchovies, if you like.



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