When Summer is coming, who doesn’t love a good Caesar Salad? There are millions of possible variations for a good Caesar, however be aware that the number of mandatory ingredients comes down to four of them, and adding too many of other ingredients of your own choice often represents a risk to ruin it all. I mean, who would want a Caesar Salad to turn into just any other salad with many random ingredients? No, no, no, no, no, nobody!
Personally speaking, I think if one wants to cook a recipe with a twist, he or she’s rather go with some ingredients of the same type as the original ones. If one goes with totally different types of ingredients, then it’s not anymore to be called a twist but rather the recipe-making of a totally different dish. Also, a twist with ingredients of the same type allows two kinds of variations: either you exchange an ingredient for another one, or you add an extra ingredient to the original recipe.
For my Caesar Salad with a twist, I actually did both. Firstly, let me remind us (yes, us) that the four mandatory ingredients of the original Caesar Salad are Romaine lettuce, an egg, croutons and Parmesan. The egg actually is one of the components of the Caesar Salad sauce. In many places, the Caesar Salad is often topped with chicken pieces. What I did here is that I opted for the variation that includes chicken; although it gives a great taste to the salad, it totally remains optional. Then, I added a few minced spinach leaves to the Romaine lettuce (adding a same type of ingredient, leaves), I removed the coddled egg from the sauce composition and replaced it by one sliced hard-boiled egg per serving (hehe, smart!), and I replaced the regular leftover bread traditionally used to make croutons by cubes cut out from my delicious Challah bread (leftover as well) which you can find the recipe of by clicking here (exchanging an ingredient for another one). And last but not least, I worked on the Caesar Salad sauce in order to make it as close to the original recipe as possible, while turning it into a bit healthier version: less mayo, Greek yogurt for the consistency and for compensating the absence of the coddled egg, no anchovy but more salt, no oil nor Worcestershire sauce…
- Romaine lettuce
- Spinach leaves
- 2 eggs
- 80 grams of Parmesan cheese
- Leftover bread or leftover challah
- 2 chicken breasts
- 2 tbsp of mayonnaise
- 3 tbsp of thick Greek yogurt
- 1 tbsp of lime or lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- salt and pepper
- 1 tbsp of cold water
- Hard-boil the eggs. Let them cool down under cold water.
- Prepare the croutons: dice up your leftover bread or leftover Challah. In a bowl, season the cubes with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a small pan, and start frying the bread cubes. When they begin to turn golden, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and keep frying for one more minute. Reserve.
- Butterfly the chicken breasts (open them in two), salt and pepper, and grill them in the same pan 3 minutes on each side. Lower the fire, cover with a lid and cook on very low for 2 more minutes. Let them cool down. Slice them up when at least at room temperature.
- In the meantime, prepare the Caesar sauce. Combine in a small bowl the mayo, Greek yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, 1 tbsp of water, salt and pepper.
- Mince the Romaine and spinach leaves, not too thinly. Wash very thoroughly and gently drain.
- In a big salad bowl, combine 2/3 of the leaves with half of the croutons, and the Caesar salad sauce. Add in the rest of Romaine and spinach leaves, and the rest of croutons. Combine again.
- Shell the eggs and slice them in quarters.
- Plate up. In each individual plate, serve the salad with croutons, surround with the egg slices, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, and top with the chicken strips.
Created and Written by Sophie Rebibo-Halimi, © 2016 All Rights Reserved.