If you don't want to make your own dressing, sub in a quality store-bought Caesar dressing to shave off more prep time.
From Lauren Hendrickson, YumSugar
Grilled Caesar Salad
1 clove garlic, smashed
1/2 teaspoon anchovy paste or 2 anchovy fillets
1 egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon water
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup Parmesan, grated
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 heads of romaine lettuce, cleaned and halved
2 focaccia buns or 1/4 of a french baguette, sliced into 1" strips
4 salted whole anchovies (optional)
- Make the dressing: Combine the garlic, anchovy paste or anchovies, egg yolk, mustard, lemon juice, lemon zest, and water in a blender or mini food processor and process for 30 seconds until the mixture is smooth.
- With the food processor running, slowly pour 1/4 cup olive oil to emulsify. Add 1/8 cup grated Parmesan, a pinch of salt, and a couple of grinds of black pepper and give the food processor a quick whirl; set aside and refrigerate if not immediately using.
- Grill the lettuce and bread: Heat a grill to medium. Brush the romaine lettuce and bread with the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Once the grill is hot, carefully toss the strips of bread on the grill. Flip the strips of breads once they are golden, and while the remaining side grills, place the romaine lettuce cut-side down. Grill each side of the romaine for about 30-60 seconds on each side, or until light grill marks appear. If using whole anchovies, brush with olive oil and lightly grill for about 30-60 seconds on each side; be careful as they are delicate and fall through grates.
- Assemble the salad: Place grilled lettuce on a plate and top with a sprinkle of Parmesan and a drizzle of dressing and top with grilled croutons.
Makes 4 appetizer or side salads.