Many, many lifetimes ago my husband worked in the dinning room of a big fancy hotel. There, they made a “classic” caesar salad, that he still maintains contained no mayo, mustard, and heaven forbid no worcestershire.
Looking at the picture you may surmise that this is clearly not that “classic” recipe, with the additions of bacon, tomatoes and red onion. In my defense we were not that hungry having had a super late lunch. Whenever I think I can get from late lunch to bed without something for dinner I end up in the pantry scrounging up super unhealthy foods at 11pm.
This version, my favorite so far, had all the usual ingredients you would expect, fresh anchovies for a bright briny blast of flavor, loads freshly grated parmesan cheese, and definitely raw egg yolks, which emulsify the dressing so that it clings beautifully to the romaine lettuce.
I know, I know, a lot of you are wary of adding an uncooked egg yolk to a salad, there are ways around that concern honey don’t worry. Details on how to coddle an egg in the microwave described in the recipe below should squelch that fear. Now for those of you who don’t like anchovies, just add a teaspoon of worcestershire sauce for a salty umami replacement, easy!
Just don’t tell my husband.
- 3-4 slices of bacon per person
- 1/4 cup grape or cherry tomatoes sliced in half
- 1/4 of a small red onion sliced thinly
- 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 cloves of garlic, passed through press
- 6 anchovy filets (I use a whole 2 oz can of flat filets)
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 2 egg yolks
- 3/4 tablespoon of Dijon mustard
- 3-4 cranks of fresh black pepper
- 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, with more for sprinkling on top
- 2 romaine "hearts" chopped into wide ribbons, or 1 large head of romaine chopped
Cook the bacon to your desired crispness and set aside.
Grab a medium bowl and add the sliced tomatoes and red onion, toss with 1 Tbsp of olive oil and some salt and pepper and set aside.
In a large, preferably wooden, bowl add the olive oil and garlic.
Add anchovies and chop into really small pieces using two sharp knives.
Now add the lemon juice, egg yolks, Dijon and pepper, stir around with a fork then add the parmesan cheese.
Place chopped romaine on top and toss a bit, add the tomatoes and onion and toss until all the lettuces are coated with dressing.
Sprinkle with more grated parmesan and serve.
To coddle an egg first prepare an ice bath. Break the egg into a microwave safe bowl and heat on high for 10-15 seconds. Let cool, then use as directed.