First of all I apologize for the unoriginality of the title. Tonight I was looking for something quick after 4 hours making chili yesterday. A piece of sole with lemon and sea salt and a Caesar salad.
I make all of my own salad dressing and so should you. Vinaigrette is, literally, a 1 minute recipe and once you get the basic formula down you will never eat the same dressing twice. Caesar while short on ingredients does require the “intermediate” cooking technique known as emulsifying, the skill of getting oil to stay in eggs. Again once you do it once sucessfully you’ll be much less intimidated. Now here’s my secret crouton recipe… toss cubes of day old bread (in this case whole grain) in a little olive oil sprinkle with your choice of herb (in this case basil oregano and garlic powder), add a bit of grated hard cheese. Spread on a baking sheet, bake at 300 for about 30 minutes.
Here is a link to a pretty authentic Caesar recipe. http://www.reluctantgourmet.com/caesar.htm. It also has a link to a video showing the technique.
The reluctantgourmet.com tells the history of the salad, invented in Mexico by Caesar Cardini and points out that anchovies were not in the original mix. I’m guessing that xantham gum, caramel color, and natural butter flavor weren’t either, but all of these are in Cardini’s brand Caesar Dressing and Croutons sold in Target and Walmart. Opinions vary but I’d rather take my chances with raw egg yolks.