-This is one of my all time favorite salads. I can’t tell you how many people have told me they do not like anchovies and then when I make them this salad they absolutely love it!
Another good thing about this salad, as far as going out for dinner, if you are like me and are pescetarian, and your friends want to go to a steak house restaurant you can always find amazing Caesar salads in steak houses so you can also enjoy yourself.
You can order that and maybe potato skins without bacon.
Something that may surprise you is that the Caesar salad originated in Mexico by an Italian immigrant who operated restaurants in Mexico and the US.
This salad is sometimes prepared tableside by the chef or the waiter/waitress. The original salad did not contain anchovies but was added later and definitely makes the salad more delicious.
You can make it without if you have tried the salad with anchovies and still did not like the flavor that they added but please try it with anchovies first. Or, you can even be sneaky and not even tell anybody that is has anchovies, odds are they will not even notice but love the salad anyway.
6anchovy fillets (packed in oil)Drained. You can also adjust this to personal taste although I recommend to use all 6, even if you think you do not like anchovies you will be surprised, promise!
2small garlic clovesPeeled and minced. You can add more or less depending on your personal preference towards garlic. For me, I love it!
Sea salt to taste
2tablespoonslarge organic egg yolksYou can replace with mayonnaise if raw egg yolks bother you; personally I use the mayonnaise although the classic recipe involved raw egg yolks
2tablespoonsfresh lemon or lime juiceYou can always add more later if you feel you need to
2tablespoonsextra virgin olive oil
3tablespoonsParmesan cheeseFinely grated.
black pepperFreshly ground.
3romaine lettuce hearts
Parmesan cheeseEnough to sliver and garnish generously.
3cupstorn 1" pieces country style crusty breadDo not remove the crusts!
In a food processor combine anchovy fillets, minced garlic, egg yolk or mayonnaise, lemon or limejuice, mustard, a splash of Worcestershire sauce and sea salt to taste, just a pinch at first then you can check later to see how it tastes. The anchovies are very salty so probably will not need to add much salt and sea salt is milder than regular salt.
Process until well blended.
Adding slowly the olive oil and process again until well blended.
Pour into a bowl and whisk in your grated Parmesan cheese, taste, add a little freshly ground black pepper and see if you feel you need more salt, lemon or lime juice or not, If too acidy you can always add a little more extra virgin olive oil.
Preheat oven to 375° Fahrenheit.
Tear the bread into small bite size pieces, this insures the croutons have a lot of texture which is great for holding the dressing.
Toss croutons with olive oil on top of a baking sheet.
Sprinkle them with a little sea salt and freshly ground black pepper and then toss.
Bake, checking often to make sure they don’t burn and toss them occasionally while baking so they are golden on all sides.
When golden on all sides (after baking 10 to 15 minutes) remove them and let them cool.
Remove any outer tougher leaves of the hearts of romaine and use the inner, smaller, more tender leaves and gently tear into large bit sized pieces - some people prefer to leave them whole if they are not too large, chose whichever you prefer the most. Personally I prefer bit sized pieces because it is easier to eat that way.
Shave the Parmesan using a vegetable peeler so the cheese peels into nice thin slivers.
Use your hands to gently toss the lettuce, croutons, and dressing. Garnish generously with plenty of shaved Parmesan cheese and serve immediately.
Although it may not be traditional you can add thinly sliced tomatoes, button style mushrooms, thinly sliced avocado or fried tortilla strips in place of croutons. Also, ensure that your pepper is freshly ground - the flavors are so much better than pre-milled.
Lori was born in southern California and currently resides in Mexico. She is an actress and model who also writes in the fields of nutrition, wellness, and cuisine. Her passions include working as a volunteer with various groups in the rescue and rehabilitation of orphaned and injured animals.