Chef and Food Writer Theresa Carle-Sanders – Quick Bites from Pender
Caesar Salad Dressing – The Culinary School Recipe
Caesar salad has nothing to do with Julius Caesar, Italy, or, for that matter, Europe at large. There are a number of different stories about its “invention,” almost all of which take place in California. Its first recorded appearance is on a LA restaurant menu from 1946.
Which is why I was a bit surprised to see it on our French Culinary School curriculum, Week 1. But by the time we were back at our desks, chomping on the most substantial food we had made as of yet, I had made a few key discoveries related to Caesar salad:
There were people in this Professional Culinary Program with me who had never used a whisk.
Kenny, the self-professed Second Coming of Carême at the back of the class, preferred Earl’s Restaurants’ bottled dressing. (Note to self: disregard any future culinary opinions expressed by Kenny.)
Chef P was right about the over-powering flavour of olive oil (especially evoo). (Note to self: cut olive oil with an equal amount of vegetable oil.)
I had a new Caesar dressing to call my own.
(Click on the title below for a printable version of the recipe.)
Egg Yolk (large)
Garlic, halved, green root removed
Lemon Juice, fresh squeezed
Romaine Lettuce, picked over and washed
Approx 1 C
Parmesan Cheese, good stuff, freshly grated
t=teaspoon ml=millilitres T=tablespoon
C=cup TT=to taste
Pulse the yolk, dijon, garlic and anchovies in a food processor (the small bowl if you have one) 4 or 5 times to blend. With the processor on, slowly pour in the oils through the food chute. Stop halfway through to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Once all of the oil is incorporated, add lemon juice and s+p to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve (up to 3 days).
2 ways to assemble the salad:
Using a pastry brush, brush whole leaves of romaine with dressing
·This can easily be made by hand. Ensure that you mince the garlic and anchovies well, then fold both in at the end with the lemon juice.
·Egg whites can be frozen with little effect on quality. Save them up for a big batch of meringues…
·If the dressing is too thick, thin with lemon juice and/or water.