Ultimate Caesar Salad

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr (includes cooling time)
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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Ingredients

Dressing:

Juice of 1 large lemon

2 anchovy fillets 

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 

1 garlic clove 

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce 

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 

Croutons:

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

4 cloves garlic, crushed and peeled 

4 cups cubed day-old plain focaccia

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 

To assemble the salad:

3 heads romaine hearts, trimmed and torn into bite-sized pieces

1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus 1 (2-ounce) chunk 

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. For the dressing: Combine the lemon juice, anchovies, mustard, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt and a generous grind of black pepper in a mini-food processor and process until smooth. With the machine running, add the olive oil in a slow, steady stream to make a smooth, slightly thick dressing.
  3. For the croutons: Heat the olive oil in a small skillet over low heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until it is golden and begins to soften, 5 to 6 minutes. Let cool, then remove and discard garlic.
  4. Put the focaccia in a large bowl and drizzle with the garlic oil. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and several grinds of black pepper and toss well to coat all of the cubes in oil. Spread on a baking sheet and toast, tossing halfway through, until the croutons are lightly golden and crisp, about 12 minutes. Let cool.
  5. To assemble: When ready to serve, put the romaine in a large serving bowl and sprinkle with the grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. Add the croutons, drizzle with the dressing and toss well. Season with salt and pepper, if necessary. Use a vegetable peeler to shave shards of Parmigiano-Reggiano over the salad, toss gently again, and serve immediately.
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