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I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Caesar Salad

Caesar salad is one of those simple salads that appears on most restaurant menus. The original Caesar salad recipe was created in Mexico. The dressing did not have anchovies and Romano was used instead of Parmesan cheese. Most Caesar salad dressing recipes now have anchovies (optional) and Parmesan cheese. Some restaurants serve a version of Caesar salad made with a non-creamy dressing. Bacon pieces and chicken are popular additions. Caesar salad with chicken has also been used in wraps. In most restaurants it tends to be a bit over priced considering the ingredients and simplicity but remains a popular choice.

Romaine lettuce (1) is the lettuce of choice for Caesar salad. This easy to grow lettuce is rich in vitamins A and C. It has a nice flavour as well as being crispy. One of my biggest complaints with many greens based salads served at restaurants is the ingredients are not cut to the proper bite size.

Method: Wash the lettuce and pat dry (1). Place the lettuce on a cutting board with the long side facing you (1). Starting at one side, make a cut along the side about one inch from outer edge running from the base to the tip of the head of lettuce (2). Place your knife about one inch from the first cut and make another cut from base to tip. Continue making one inch wide cuts the length until you reach the other outer edge. Starting about one inch from the outer edge of the tip, cut across the strips you just formed. Continue in this manner until you reach about 2 inches from the end of the head. Place your pieces onto a dry, clean tea towel. Pat then put into mixing bowl.

My preferred dressing for Caesar salad is Renee's Gourmet Caesar made with fresh, natural ingredients. It contains no preservatives, no hydrogenated oils, no MSG and made with pasteurized eggs. It is found in the refrigerated produce section of many Canadian grocery stores. This dressing must be kept refrigerated even if the jar is unopened. Renee's Gourmet dressings and dips are distributed in Canada only. Renee's Gourmet Foods purchased A1 Steak Sauce® July 28, 1999 and produces A1 Steak Sauce® for Canadian distribution only. A1 Steak Sauce® sold in the US is made by Kraft Foods.

Many people are often confused when travelling or moving from Canada to the United States and visa versa. Aside from some products simply distributed in one country but not another can be frustrating as they struggle to find a suitable replacement. At the same time familiar brands often have subtle differences in taste between the two countries. I will discuss this more in a future post.

As salads go Caesar salad is inexpensive to make at home. It When making this salad (4) be sure to use fresh grated Parmesan cheese, real bacon pieces, fresh lemons and fresh ground black pepper. It really does make a difference! I also like to add a few homemade sourdough croutons. For a complete meal, add a sliced grilled boneless, skinless chick breast fanned over the top of the salad. Garnish with lemon slices.

Caesar Salad

1 head prepared romaine lettuce
1 c Renee's Gourmet Caesar dressing
½ c fresh grated Parmesan cheese
½ cup bacon pieces
1 whole lemon, cut into wedges
homemade croutons (optional)
fresh grated black peppercorn

Fry the bacon until crisp. Drain well and set aside. Mix the dressing with the lettuce just before serving. Top each individual salad with bacon pieces, a good pinch of fresh grated Parmesan cheese and homemade croutons. Sprinkle lightly with fresh grated black peppercorn. Garnish with lemon wedges.

Serves 6

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