Poor Julius Caesar*. The betrayal was heartbreaking. Tragic. I hope food experts understand what I am about to commit. A salad sin somewhere in the food sphere. I would really prefer to call it “Brutus Salad” but then no one would know what the hell I was talking about. That’s OK. My kids are none the wiser either.
This recipe is one of the few salads that our kids repeatedly ask me to make. Having had caesar salads in restaurants before, my oldest son asked me to make one. This accidental creation was all I could muster from our kitchen pantry that evening. It was so well received that it has now become a regular in our home.
Sometimes I serve this salad with thinly sliced red onions, or cucumbers, or red peppers. Sometimes I add thin slices of cooked chicken breast , or even bacon. Just depends on our pantry, my mood, or my level of enthusiasm. Mostly though, it is enjoyed by itself as pictured above with romaine lettuce.
Unlike the original, it does not contain anchovies as I draw a blank when it comes to buying them and remembering to store them in the fridge. Instead, I use Worcestershire sauce which contains anchovies but does not need refrigerating and thankfully has a long shelf life. It also has no olive oil. Or eggs. Remember, this is a cheat. I use mayonnaise and plain yogurt to add a little fat and creaminess. Could it be healthy? I don’t know. It does have fresh lemon juice, garlic and parmesan, however. Let us not forget that even Brutus was at one time a close friend.
“The Anti-Caesar Salad” by loopylocks
Makes about 3/4 Cup
prep time: about 5 minutes
1 small lemon, squeezed
1/4 C mayonnaise
1/3 C plain yogurt
1 large garlic clove, finely minced
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp sugar
1/3 C fresh parmesan, finely grated
freshly cracked salt & pepper to taste
In a jar or small glass bowl, squeeze the juice of a lemon. Tip – zest your lemon on a sheet of plastic wrap before you begin and store the rind in the freezer for a future recipe. Add the mayo, yogurt, dijon, sugar, garlic, salt and pepper and Worcestershire sauce. Whisk until combined. Stir in the parmesan cheese at the end. Serve over romaine lettuce.
If you do not have or like croutons, you can sprinkle the salad just at serving time with Panko (Japanese) bread crumbs. It adds a nice crunch to the salad. This is optional. My kids love it.
This dressing recipe makes enough to mix with 2 heads of romaine hearts. If you are only using one head, do not add all the dressing at once. Use your judgement and put up the remaining dressing for another day. It stores in the fridge for a couple days. Enjoy!
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A note on the artwork – Both drawings of Julius Caesar were created by my eldest. I asked her to help me with a picture because let’s face it, salad is not as exciting as art. Well, unless you want to talk about good food being an art form, and then I might agree. She drew me two versions. I could not pick which one I love more. They are far better than my salad could ever hope to be. Feeling proud. © 2016 by Hannah Bursey. All rights reserved.
* As a teen I thought a Caesar was named after the one and only Julius Caesar. The original salad was actually named after Caesar Cardini, an Italian immigrant who became a restauranteur in Mexico and is said to have created it in the 1920’s. There is no affiliation to Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar but it sure makes for a good story as I am committing treason with the original recipe.