July 30, 2012

Caesar Salad

My salad consumption drops substantially during the winter months. And who can blame me?! With snow, cold winds and sometimes -25 temperatures the last thing I was to have is something cold. But in the summer, I can live off salads and I often do. In many pictures I post there’s often just a simple salad on the side, and why not? They seem so fresh and crisp, and usually, quite healthy.

One of the first things I learned to make was a Caesar salad. I had taken a cooking elective while in junior high and one of the things we learned to make was Caesar salad and veal parmigiana (I passed on the baby cow – ticking off the teacher – but thoroughly enjoy the salad). My mom was impressed and so it became one of our regular salads at home. Once my sister got to junior high she learnt a creamy dressing version, which is also really good, but I prefer the oil and vinegar base.

While watching copious amounts of TV while sick in November Anna Olson (on her show Fresh) showed how to have a coddled-like egg that is cooked thoroughly. Knowing that coddled eggs aren’t always preferable (and sometimes that stringy bit just won’t mix in and I always get that bit – yuck) I thought I’d give it a try. In my cheater version, I make a coddled egg by putting a cracked egg in a glass measuring cup and microwaving it for half a minute or so, and it’s done. For Anna’s version I again cracked an egg into a glass measuring cup and beat it a bit. In 5-10 second intervals I cooked it and beat it again until it was just cooked and light and fluffy. It was interesting and different, and in my Caesar salad dressing it was perfect.

Caesar Salad
1 head of romaine lettuce, washed and torn into bit-sized pieces
Parmesan cheese
Gluten-free croutons
1 coddled egg
6-8 tbs olive oil
4 tbs white vinegar
2 tbs butter
1-2 cloves minced garlic
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp dried oregano
Pinch of salt
After coddling the egg, add melted butter (you could add the butter and melt it while cooking the egg if you like). Add oil and vinegar and mix well. Add garlic, mustard, oregano, salt and pepper and whisk well. Taste and adjust seasoning to your preference (or more oil or vinegar). Add some cheese to the dressing and mix again. Place lettuce and croutons in a large bowl. Sprinkle oregano and parmesan over the top and then drizzle dressing over salad (use as much or as little as you like). Toss and serve. Leftover dressing will keep in the fridge for a week or so.


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