Grilled Romaine with Ceaser or Goddess Dressing

GRILL TALK: Have you ever grilled lettuce?

grilled romaineCeasar salad has always been a favorite of mine.  I’ve done the same dressing (slightly tweaked) for years and put it on my blog a while back – see LINK at bottom.

Then I came across this one on yahoo & decided to try it.  The main difference was not only the way the romaine was served, but using two whole (not just the yolk) eggs that were first coddled & the dressing made, non traditionally in a blender.

First the hearts of romaine were cut in half along the length but the bottom was not torn from the base (do not trim).  Season the leaves with salt & pepper and drizzle with some olive oil then place cut side down on the grill until done.  This will bring your salad to the next level – believe me.  You can try this dressing or use the other one.  Both are good with this simple and delicious way of preparing the salad – especially for Summer.

Caesar Dressing:

Coddling 2 eggs:  rinse and put in boiling water for one minute.  Let sit for a few minutes and put them in the blender.  **coddling is done to reduce or minimize the risk of bacterial contamination when using raw eggs.

Add:  red wine vinegar, grainy mustard, balsamic, Dijon mustard and blend.  Add lemon, garlic, anchovy, parmesan, pinch of salt.  Put in blender & slowly add olive oil.  TIP:  I also put a bit of tabasco,  worcestershire & caper juice in this one.

For Croutons:  Take crusty bread & pour some olive oil over top.  S+P.  Spread on baking sheet in 350 degree oven until crisp.

Top grilled lettuce with dressing & croutons, sliced fresh tomato (optional), top with parmesan cheese & enjoy!  And do give me your feedback.

Traditional caesar dressing previously posted:

https://intrigueimports.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/simply-satisfying-the-best-caesar-salad/

Green Goddess Dressing – a lovely, creamy dressing

photo - Marcus Nillson
photo – Marcus Nillson

 Dressing:

  • 1 ripe Hass avocado, pitted and peeled
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped basil
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 2 tsp. chopped tarragon
  • 1 tsp. chopped garlic
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil


To make dressing: In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, combine avocado, basil, parsley, tarragon, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and pepper and process until very smooth, scraping down sides. With the motor running, add olive oil. Add enough cold water to make dressing pourable, about 3/4 cup. Refrigerate until ready to serve.  For the salad with grilled romaine you can add chopped tomatoes, onion, avocado, etc.  You can even grill those too if you like.

Simply Satisfying – The Best Caesar Salad

Caesar salad has always been one of my all time favorite salads but I could never get the dressing quite right…..until I ordered it once in an Italian restaurant in Niagara Falls of all places.  The waiter came to our table with this wooden stand and placed a huge wooden bowl on top and then started mixing from scratch right in front of us.  He looked so professional doing so that I tried to memorize his every ingredient with the correct proportions.   I don’t believe anything is left out, in fact I added another two ingredients.

Wood bowl from Durban, S.A.
Wood bowl from Durban, S.A.

Start with fresh ground pepper right in the bowl (preferably wooden) that you’ll be serving from.

Purists will tell you that Caesar Salad has to be made with fresh anchovies but I admit to using about 1 inch of Anchovy paste instead.  A good quality one works as a nice replacement.

Crushed or finely chopped garlic (a couple cloves…or more)

About 1 tsp. of dried mustard like Keen’s

1 egg yolk

a few drops of Worcestershire sauce and Red Wine Vinegar.

Mix well.

Then:

Whisk in the juice of ½ fresh lemon.  Add anywhere from ¼ to  ½ cup of olive oil bit by bit – whisking slowly in with the rest.  It depends on how thick you like the dressing.  More often than not I end up using about 1/3 of a cup.  Finally mix in ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Toss in enough  romaine lettuce for the dressing, tearing it with your hands.  Add more parmesan & pepper if you like once plated.  Also bacon bits and croutons if desired.

NOTE:  Since then I was at another restaurant where the waiter added some capers and a splash of Tabasco.  You can add that before the lemon if you want – it’s a great addition.

For tasty croutons just cut up some bread into little squares and add it to a hot skillet with a bit of olive oil and Italian spices until they start to get crispy.  You can also freeze them for later use.

**p.s.  I thought yesterday was Wednesday so I posted something on design.  Normally I post a recipe on Tuesday. Might have suffered a bit of heat stroke in Palm Springs. Does anyone really care? Do you bloggers follow some kind of format or just post haphazardly?