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Ceasar salad dressing

susielynn's picture

I tried the Fine Cooking and Cooks Illustrated recipes for Caesar dressing using garlic,worcheshire sauce, anchovy paste,Dijon mustard, fresh lemon juice and parmesan cheese. Both recipes fell short of a fine restaurant Caesar..any suggestions?


Edited 5/20/2009 7:14 pm ET by susielynn

shywoodlandcreature's picture

(post #67017, reply #1 of 106)

Where did they fall short for you? I've used the FC recipe several times, and have always been very pleased with it. DH frequently makes Thomas Keller's version of a Caesar - it looks more intimidating than it really is, and it is wonderful. Here's the recipe for Keller's dressing - this might be more like what you're looking for:

Thomas Keller’s Anchovy Dressing
(makes 2 cups)

1.5 tablespoons chopped garlic
1.5 tablespoons chopped shallots
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 salt-packed anchovy filets, deboned, soaked in milk for 30 minutes, drained and patted dry
1 large egg yolk
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup canola oil
freshly ground pepper

Purée the garlic, shallots, vinegar, mustard, lemon juice and achovies in a blender until smooth. Transfer to a mixer with the paddle attachment and beat in the egg yolk. With the machine running, slowly drizzle in the oils. Season with white pepper. Cover and refrigerate. This can be stored for up to 3 days.




"And then, because of the transitive reactive Halstead-era seizing properties of the Aboriginal Double Humpback Turtle, I thought, what if I add one teaspoon of clarified monkey paste?" Anonymous blog comment on "America's Test Kitchen"
Risottogirl's picture

(post #67017, reply #2 of 106)

This has to be one of the perfect salad dressings in existence.

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

Water is a great ingredient to cook with, it has such a neutral flavor - Bobby Flay

shywoodlandcreature's picture

(post #67017, reply #3 of 106)

It's hard to argue with, isn't it. I think you could also leave out the anchovies if you want, and still have a pretty spectacular dressing.




"And then, because of the transitive reactive Halstead-era seizing properties of the Aboriginal Double Humpback Turtle, I thought, what if I add one teaspoon of clarified monkey paste?" Anonymous blog comment on "America's Test Kitchen"

evelyn's picture

(post #67017, reply #16 of 106)

but...but...but...it's the anchovies that make it so special!!!

Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they're going to catch you in next.

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
shywoodlandcreature's picture

(post #67017, reply #17 of 106)

Yeah, but lots of people think they don't like anchovies, or are allergic. Or have just run out of anchovies, and don't have time to get more.




"And then, because of the transitive reactive Halstead-era seizing properties of the Aboriginal Double Humpback Turtle, I thought, what if I add one teaspoon of clarified monkey paste?" Anonymous blog comment on "America's Test Kitchen"

MadMom's picture

(post #67017, reply #18 of 106)

There are no anchovies in Caesar Salad.



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evelyn's picture

(post #67017, reply #19 of 106)

every recipe I've ever used has them in the dressing.

Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they're going to catch you in next.

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
MadMom's picture

(post #67017, reply #21 of 106)

The original recipe did not.  It used worchestershire (sp) sauce, which has anchovie taste in it.  Julia Child should know.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

evelyn's picture

(post #67017, reply #22 of 106)

you are right - just googled Cardini's Caesar Salad and there was no anchovy...still, I do love my anchovies in the dressing. They give it that special zing.

Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they're going to catch you in next.

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
chiquiNO's picture

(post #67017, reply #38 of 106)

Wouldn't make this salad without anchovies!!!!  I love them whole on salads...but that's me!!

 

 

FL.Cook's picture

(post #67017, reply #76 of 106)

Very true, but a Caesar salad without anchovies is just not a Caesar salad to me!!

Carole

Carole
susielynn's picture

(post #67017, reply #77 of 106)

Thank you one and all for all of your tips and recipes. I LOVE the depth of flavor that anchovies brings to the salad. I used some wrap around a caper and the earthy,salty taste of the caper made it even more interesting..that's what cooking is..a new adventure everyday. Thanks again. Susie

bonnieruth's picture

(post #67017, reply #78 of 106)

Responding to the caution that your dressing is only as good as your balsamic and olive oil.  I use lemon in Caesar dressing, so no problem there, but I am at a loss how to ever know whether my balsamics are good enough.  I understand that a "true" balsamic would be beyond anyone's price range for normal cooking, but how expensive does one need to get? I don't think I like the Whole Foods brand, which is pretty inexpensive as I recall.  And where did I read recently that when making a dressing, one should anything but balsamic?  I did try sherry vinegar instead after reading that, and I probably liked it better, but DH missed the balsamic.  What I seem to end up doing is keep my oil to vinegar ratio very high, which is okay but might not be necessary if I had a good enough balsamic.  Hope someone has thoughts here, or can suggest specific brands. 

TracyK's picture

(post #67017, reply #79 of 106)

I use a pretty cheap bottle of balsamic vinegar, it has a green label and is by Monari Federzoni. About $5 for 16 ounces... looks like this:



I'm sure it's not the best available, but it suits my budget and my palate just fine, and I like to think I'm not a complete philistine. :)


I love a good sherry vinaigrette as much as the next person, but a good balsamic vinaigrett with shallots, dijon, and lots of black pepper cannot be beat IMO.



"One of the great strengths of the United States is … we do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation. We consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values."

                                                            --President Barack Obama

bonnieruth's picture

(post #67017, reply #85 of 106)

Thank you for the information (and picture!).  I will look for this brand.

thecooktoo's picture

(post #67017, reply #90 of 106)

If I'm not mistaken, this is the brand that CI picked as the best of the inexpensive Supermarket brands.  I use it all the time and keep my good stuff that I brought back from Italy for family and close friends and very special occasions.


In WS not long ago I picked up a bottle of Balsamic Glaze that is really good...now I don't have to cook mine down.


Jim

suz's picture

(post #67017, reply #82 of 106)

A trick I learned some time ago is to add a bit of honey to your dressing when using Balsamic that is of lesser, more affordable grade.  When looking for Balsamic you want one that is aged without any added additives/ingredients

bonnieruth's picture

(post #67017, reply #86 of 106)

Thanks for the response.  I hadn't heard the honey trick before, will try it for sure.  Also appreciate the suggestion to look for a balsamic without additional additives/ingredients - makes sense, but I hadn't thought about it.

cyalexa's picture

(post #67017, reply #84 of 106)

I buy the same grocery store brand as Tracy. I also keep on hand some of the same product reduced by half on the cook top (turn the fan on high, the fumes are very strong!). I think I have a balsamic tasting event scheduled for next week (I'm traveling in CA), if so, I will report.

bonnieruth's picture

(post #67017, reply #87 of 106)

Since you and Tracy both use this brand, I will definitely try it.  I am curious what you do with the reduced-by-half on your stove.  (???)  Please do keep me informed if you have a balsamic tasting.

cyalexa's picture

(post #67017, reply #88 of 106)

I am curious what you do with the reduced-by-half on your stove.


I use it primarily in salad dressings (not ceasar, I like lemon juice), drizzled on strawberries or watermelon and when making a balsamic glaze.

roz's picture

(post #67017, reply #89 of 106)

I've also reduced balsamic to a syrup stage and drizzled over salmon. Very good! And you are right about the fumes...

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz
Adele's picture

(post #67017, reply #91 of 106)

I have a bottle that also sits by the stove of reduced balsamic.  I made it specifically for baklava. This is what Peter made when I was visiting, and I use it for salad dressings, a drizzle on vegetables, and especially on mushrooms.

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

evelyn's picture

(post #67017, reply #92 of 106)

I love the balsamic 'syrup' on grilled veggies - just the lightest of drizzles and I'm in heaven!

Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they're going to catch you in next.

In life, learn the rules so that you know how to break them properly.
Glenys's picture

(post #67017, reply #93 of 106)

Reduced balsamic will go mouldy so watch it. You've cooked out the acid but it has all sorts of stuff that in it that loves mould so it can grow a fuzzy blue top.

Adele's picture

(post #67017, reply #94 of 106)

Take thee to the refrigerator!   Thanks for the heads up.

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

But, but, it's SUPPOSED to taste like that!

bonnieruth's picture

(post #67017, reply #95 of 106)

I just tried to post this and apparently failed, so forgive me if it shows up twice.  My question was, does reducing the balsamic make it stronger or weaker?  I would have thought stronger since reductions usually are, but if it cooks out the acid, is it weaker?  Or less acidic but stronger in the other flavors?  I'm sure I would like less acid.

Gretchen's picture

(post #67017, reply #96 of 106)

It is more syrupy and flavorful. It isn't really cooking the "acid" per se off--I think it would be  cooking the water off. But that doesn't make what Glenys said any less good advice.

Gretchen

Gretchen
TracyK's picture

(post #67017, reply #97 of 106)

It becomes less acidic/astringent, less tart, more sweet, and syrupy in texture.


"One of the great strengths of the United States is … we do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation. We consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values."

                                                            --President Barack Obama

bonnieruth's picture

(post #67017, reply #98 of 106)

And the reduced version is what you use on your salads?