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Caesar salad is a classic. We know what a fabulous Caesar salad tastes like. We’ve seen the pro-chef pull up to our restaurant table with a trolley, shmearing a cut garlic clove on the inner surface of a wooden bowl.

But as wonderful as Caesar salads can be, they all too often disappoint. Dressing that is too thick, applied with a heavy hand, weighing down and overpowering the lettuce — not pleasant.

This Caesar dressing is adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook. In their quest for a perfect tasting dressing, light and healthy, they hit the spot. My adaptation substitutes regular mayonnaise for the low-cal ATK recommends. I’ll get back to you just as soon as I can stop licking the spoon, bowl and my fingers.

On the more Jittery creative side, this Marinated Caesar Salad version incorporates loads of colourful and flavourful veggies and a healthy dose of protein.

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Caesar Dressing

  • 1/2 c buttermilk
  • 1/4 c lemon juice
  • 1/4 c mayonnaise
  • 4 t Dijon mustard
  • 2 t Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 anchovy fillets, rinsed (optional for vegetarians, tastes great either way)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 t sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1 c grated Parmesan Reggiano

Use a blender to puree all the ingredients except the oil and the Parmesan. When blended, add the oil and blend to mix it in. In a medium-sized bowl, mix the Parmesan into the dressing.

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Marinated Caesar Salad 

  • 1-2 Romaine lettuce, whole leaves washed and well dried. Use best looking tops as garnish.
  • 1/2 each red, yellow and orange bell peppers, cut into thin strips
  • 1 cauliflower, cut into bite sized florets, roasted at 420F with a tablespoon of olive oil and sea salt for about 20 minutes
  • 1 eggplant, diced bite size, roasted with a tablespoon of olive oil and sea salt, alongside the cauliflower
  • 1 14 oz can cannellini or navy beans, drained, rinsed and dried
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced in 1″ long strips
  • 1/2 c chopped parsley

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Combine ingredients except for lettuce in a large bowl. Add Caesar Dressing to coat. Taste to adjust for seasoning and amount of dressing. This marinated mixture can be prepared and refrigerated in advance. Serve on a platter decorated with the tops of the Romaine leaves. Serves 8-10.

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For fans of traditional Caesar salad, serve the remainder of the romaine lettuce, torn bite-sized and tossed with Caesar dressing and croutons.

Marinated Caesar Salad Print Ready Recipe

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Final note:

 

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