If Caesar Salad is one of the salad offerings at a restaurant, Tim orders one. Me, I've never been a big fan. A few months ago when I compiled my Top 50, I included Caesar Salad. Since it's Tim's favorite salad, I wanted to know how to make one. Trying to make use of my huge library of cookbooks, I searched them for a recipe. I just didn't find one that seemed like THE one. I found this recipe on Simply Recipes. If you're familiar with Elise's site, you know her recipes are awesome. This is the ONE!! I think maybe the reason I've never been a big fan of Caesar Salad's is because I haven't tried a really good one! If you like Caesar Salad, give this recipe a try, you won't be dissapointed.
Caesar Salad Recipe
Courtesy of Simply Recipes
If you have a concern about the raw eggs called for in this recipe, you can use pasteurized eggs, or you can coddle the eggs first by immersing them in boiling water for 1 minute, before cracking them open. If you don't have anchovies available, add a teaspoon of worcestershire sauce to the dressing.
1/2 cup high quality extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves fresh garlic, peeled, smashed, then minced
1 baguette, preferably a day old, sliced thin
1/4 cup freshly juiced lemon juice (plus more to taste)
4 ounces Parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon anchovy paste, or 1-2 anchovies, smashed and minced
Freshly ground black pepper (1/4 teaspoon or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon salt
4-6 small heads of romaine lettuce, rinsed, patted dry, wilted outer leaves discarded
1 In a very large bowl, whisk together the olive oil and garlic. Let sit for half an hour.
2 While the oil is sitting, make the croutons. Spread the baguette slices out over a baking sheet (may need to do in batches), lined with parchment paper or Silpat. Brush or spray with olive oil (or melted butter, or if you want garlicky croutons, dip pastry brush in the garlic infused oil you have sitting in step 1). Broil for a couple of minutes until the tops are lightly browned. (Note: do not walk away, these can easily go from browned to burnt.) Remove and let cool.
The steps up until this point can be made ahead.
3 Add anchovies and eggs to the oil garlic mixture. Whisk until creamy. Add salt and pepper and 1/4 cup of lemon juice. Whisk in half of the Parmesan cheese. Taste, add more lemon juice to taste. The lemon should give an edge to the dressing, but not overwhelm it.
4 Using your hands, tear off chunks of lettuce from the heads of lettuce (do not use a knife to cut). Add to the oil mixture and toss until coated. Add the rest of the Parmesan cheese, toss.
5 Coarsely chop the toasted bread and add (with the crumbs from the chopping) to the salad. Toss. Serve immediately.
Serves 4-6 for a main course or up to 8-12 for a side.