Friday, March 27, 2009

anchovy caesar salad

Vegetarians, avert your eyes! In case the title of this post and anchovies draped over the salad in the picture weren't clue enough, this is definitely a non-veg version of caesar salad.

I used to hate anchovies - I remember as a child, we'd go to the local pizza place and sometimes they were hiding in the midst of the other toppings - ewwwww! (I think my maybe dad liked them?) But something about my taste buds has certainly changed since then. Putting them on pizza still sounds a little strange. But in salads? Love them.

And it turns out that it was because of a local pizza place that I realized this fact. This particular pizzeria has only ok pizza (in my opinion), but the most amazing caesar salad dressing I have ever tasted. Recently, I figured out what the magic ingredient was - anchovies. What I've read online reveals that there is general disagreement regarding whether including anchovies in the dressing makes a "traditional" caesar salad or not. I honestly don't care. I just know it tastes great!

I've played with a few different variations of ingredients and amounts. This is the combination that's been the tastiest (and closest to the pizzeria's) so far:

Anchovy Caesar Salad
Serves 3-4

1 head of romaine
2 cloves garlic, sliced
3-4 anchovies (plus more for topping, if desired)
1/3 c. mayonnaise
1/3 c. freshly grated parmesan (plus more for topping)
1 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
a splash of worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. milk
4-5 Tbsp. olive oil

Chop romaine and set aside.

Combine all ingredients except olive oil in a food processor (alternatively, you can whisk it; if you do so be sure to mince the garlic rather than slice it). Process until combined. Add the olive oil slowly through the top of the processor, mixing as you go, until desired consistency is reached.

In a large salad bowl, toss the romaine with the salad dressing.

Top individual servings with additional parmesan, anchovies, and freshly ground black pepper.

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