Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Salad days.

When I was a kid, one of my favorite things to eat was the Caesar salad at the Savoy Grill in Kansas City. The salad was prepared table-side in a large wooden bowl and I was fascinated that so many odd-smelling and -looking components could combine to make something so delicious.

I was thrilled to open my copy of Ferran Adria's The Family Meal to find a very workable version of this classic salad, conveniently portioned for two.

With anchovies and egg yolk at the ready, I prepared to take on this classic... and won the day, with a few minor adjustments from the original recipe.
Perfect Caesar Salad for 2
Servings: 2 (just like in the title :) )

1 garlic clove, minced
1 anchovy, minced
1 egg yolk
1 tsp. sherry cooking wine
1 1/2 tsp. red wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese, divided
Salt and pepper
14 croutons
1 medium head Romaine lettuce, tough outer leaves removed, cut cross-wise into 1/2-inch strips

Combine the garlic and anchovies in a jar or glass using a hand blender until smooth. Add the egg yolk and continue blending, then add the sherry and vinegar until fully incorporated. With the hand blender running, slowly drizzle in the oil and blend until mixture is thick, sort of like mayonnaise. Add half of the Parmesan cheese to the dressing and stir by hand, then season with salt and pepper. If the dressing should be thinner, add a little water or vinegar, depending on your preference.

Toss the dressing with the lettuce and the rest of the Parmesan cheese in a large bowl. Divide onto two plates, then divide the croutons between the salads.

A salad fit for an emperor, or just your average Monday night. Hail, Caesar!

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