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Classic Caesar Salad with Homemade Dressing

The Caesar Salad is a timeless classic, adored for its crisp romaine lettuce, savoury Parmesan cheese, and the unmistakable tang of its dressing. Whether you're looking to bring a restaurant-quality dish to your home or passing on a beloved recipe, this guide ensures your salad stands out with homemade perfection.

 

Ingredients

 

Before we begin, here's what you'll need:

 

Dressing:

  • Anchovy fillets: 56 grams (1 tin), oil-packed, rinsed, and drained
  • Garlic: 3 to 6 cloves, coarsely chopped
  • Egg: 1 (optional - see note), about 50 grams
  • Fresh lemon juice: 30 ml (2 tablespoons)
  • Dijon mustard: 5 ml (1 teaspoon)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil (mild): 180 ml (¾ cup). Discover our selection here
  • Grated Parmesan cheese: 60 ml (¼ cup)
  • Freshly cracked black pepper to taste

Salad:

  • Romaine lettuce: 1 to 2 heads
  • Extra-virgin olive oil: 60 ml (¼ cup). Discover our selection here
  • Baguette: sliced very thinly, half a baguette
  • Parmesan cheese: Approximately 56 grams, preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano, for shaving
  • Freshly cracked black pepper to taste

Instructions

 

Here's how to assemble your Caesar Salad:

 

Make the Dressing:

 

  1. In a food processor, blend the anchovies with the garlic until mixed.

  2. Incorporate the egg, most of the lemon juice, and the mustard and process.

  3. While the food processor runs, slowly add the olive oil into the mixture to emulsify.

  4. Add the grated Parmesan, season with pepper, and combine well.

  5. Taste and adjust the seasoning, possibly adding the remaining lemon juice for balance.

Prepare the Salad:

  1. Ready your romaine lettuce by removing bruised outer leaves, rinse and ensure leaves are thoroughly dry.

  2. Warm the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat.

  3. Cook the baguette slices until golden, a matter of minutes. Remove and drain on a wire rack.

  4. Tear the romaine into bite-sized pieces into a large salad bowl.

  5. Drizzle your freshly-made dressing over the leaves, ensuring even coverage while tossing.

  6. Introduce the golden croutons to the mix.

  7. Shave strips of Parmesan generously over the top.

  8. Finish with a flourish of freshly cracked black pepper.

Wine Pairing Suggestions

 

To serve your Caesar Salad at its best, ensure portion sizes are suitable for 4 to 6 people and pair it with white wines that are high in fruitiness and acidity, like New World Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, to complement the bold flavours. Rosés also make an excellent choice for pairing.

 

Remember, the key to a distinguished Caesar Salad lies in the balance of flavours — anchovies, garlic, mustard, and Parmesan should all be present yet in harmony. This recipe, complete with homemade dressing, positions you to serve a Caesar Salad that's authentic in spirit and taste. Enjoy your meal!

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