When we got married, restaurants were at the height of the caesar salad craze. Now, I know that caesar salad never truly goes out of style. But, in the early 90s every restaurant had one. Every. restaurant.And it’s a good thing, too, ’cause we love it.There are many caesar salads filed away in my memory bank. The caesar that we order almost every time we go to CPK. The chicken caesar salad from Taffy’s Pizza that we usually got after church back in our Santa Barbara days. The salad I usually ate when I finished waiting tables at Brigitte’s. The unbelievable version that Palazzio still makes. And the delicious, hand-crafted-at-your-table version that we enjoyed the first days of our honeymoon when we forgot our travel money at home and spent two days on $40.
Shall I go on?
We’ve got lots of memories wrapped around a recipe that was created spur-of-the-moment in Tijuana almost 100 years ago. And sweet memories make it a great addition to any romantic meal. And that, in itself, is a fine thing.
Thankfully, early in our marriage we found some inexpensive alternatives to restaurant caesar salad, delicious though it may be. When I can get a good sale and coupon, I might buy Paul Newman’s or Caesar Cardini’s bottled varieties. But, the best dressing is this one. It has just a handfull of ingredients and a wonderful flavor.
Recipe: Caesar Salad
- the juice of one lemon
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 egg (I omit this if serving to children and pregnant women)
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 head romaine lettuce, washed, torn into bite-sized pieces, and chilled until ready to serve
- 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
- 1 cup croutons
- In small glass jar or bowl combine lemon juice, garlic, and egg, if using. Blend well. Add olive oil and shake or whisk well to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
- In large salad bowl, place lettuce and toss with dressing. Sprinkle on cheese and croutons, toss again.
- Serve immediately.
For more romantic meal ideas, visit Ultimate Recipe Swap and for more Fine Things, check out Finer Thing Friday.