How to Use this Blog

This blog is designed to be used like a cookbook. I've put tags on each recipe so you can go to the section on that topic just by clicking on the word in the cloud or the list. Some recipes are under more than one category to help you find what you're looking for.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Caesar Salad

I finally got the courage to make Caesar salad dressing and found out it's not that hard.  The whole "Anchovies" part always stopped me.  When I got the nerve to use a recipe that required them I next hit an obstacle that it required "anchovie paste" which I couldn't find at Walmart.  My philosophy of cooking calls for ingredients that can be found at any grocery store and doesn't send you to boutique stores with French names.  If I can't find it at Walmart then I'm just not going to mess with it.

Then it occurred to me that I could just smash up the anchovy and have paste.  Genius, no?

The next hurdle was that the recipe calls for a raw egg yolk then immediately tells you how you can die from eating raw eggs and you should make sure you are eating safe eggs.  I have personally never known or heard of anyone who has gotten sick on eating raw eggs so this is a risk I am willing to take.  The benefits of this wonderful salad are too good to pass up.

So, here is the recipe:

Buy canned anchovies ($1 at my Walmart; how can you NOT buy it?)

Take out 2 of the filets and store the rest in a ziplock bag for the next day when you will want to make more salad.  I don't know how long it will keep in the fridge but if it gets lost and forgotten for a few weeks just go buy more and throw the old stuff away. If anchovies live up to their reputation as being nasty you probably couldn't tell the difference if they went bad on you.

Mash up the two anchovies.

Here are the ingredients:

1 raw egg yolk
3 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon Worchestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 anchovy filets, mashed

Scant 1 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground pepper

Note the vegetable oil and olive oil.  The first time I made this I used all olive oil and it gave  it a strong taste.  I think the vegetable oil is better at taking a back seat to the other flavors.

Put everything but the oil in a blender and start blending.  Add the oils VERY slowly and it will emulsify like mayonnaise does.  This recipe will make a whole lot.  You will have some left over.  I don't know how long it will last in the fridge and you will probably lie awake at night thinking of raw eggs so don't try to keep it too long.

After you get the dressing made the rest is as easy as tearing up some romaine lettuce and adding some fresh slivers of Parmesan cheese and croutons.  I'll try to post a recipe for the crutons separately.

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