Caesar Salad

Caesar Salad was the invention of Caesar Cardini, an Italian-American restaurateur, who claimed to have created the first Caesar salad when his kitchen ran out of supplies on Fourth of July 1924. Wikipedia lists the traditional ingredients:

A Caesar salad is a salad of romaine lettuce and croutons dressed with parmesan cheese, lemon juice, olive oil, egg, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, and black pepper.

We used 2 egg yolks, ¼ cup olive oil, 1 tsp Thai fish sauce, 2 cloves garlic, juice of one lemon, and Dijon mustard.

You’ll also need lettuce and grated cheese. The classic ingredient is Parmigiano Reggiano (Parmesan) cheese, but we like Pecorino Romano as an alternative flavor.

Mix the ingredients in a bowl and add salt and pepper:

You can add some finely grated cheese to the sauce at this stage too.

Slice up one or two heads of romaine lettuce, mix the sauce over it, and top with grated cheese:

To make it an entrée, add beef slices or calamari with chopped nuts:

It’s extremely easy to make, and quite tasty!

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31 Comments.

  1. Hey Paul,
    Is that 2 whole eggs or 2 yolks?
    Dan

  2. Yours is a nice variation, but in my book, canned anchovies, mashed up or finely chopped so they assimilate into the dressing, are de rigueur. Not sure how you feel about canned stuff, but it’s just anchovies packed in olive oil and salt. You have, on the other hand, used fish sauce, and mustard. I’ll have to try that!

  3. Hi Gary,

    Anchovies are great too! Fish sauce is made from anchovies so it’s sort of a poor man’s anchovies.

  4. Shelley Wilson

    I thought anchovies were essential too. Nigella Lawson uses small squares crisply baked or fried potatoes as croutons- very PHD friendly.
    http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/nigella-lawson/caesar-salad-recipe/index.html
    Another British food writer, Delia Smith’s lamb’s liver Stroganoff is another fab PHD recipe- great way to eat liver for those a little squeamish.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/recipes/3346094/Delia-Smiths-recipes-lambs-liver-stroganoff.html

  5. Liver “Stroganoff” is standard Swiss German everyday fare: Geschnelltes Kalbsleberli (pan-fried calf’s liver in brown sauce). Of course, they often serve it on wide, flat noodles (wheat flour) or accompanied with Rösti (potato pancake), but that’s another matter. Just saying that a lot of the world is not squeamish about liver. Americans, let us broaden our tastes! We throw away some very nutritious cuts of animal protein. The right preparation makes them very tasty! ;o)

    • Hi Gary J Moss,

      I recently had Kalbsleberli with rösti (no wheat) in Switzerland and it was amazingly good. Would you happen to have a recipe for that brown sauce?

  6. Paul, I will buy some fish sauce and keep it on my cooking shelf. I have never used it, but see recipes (especially Asian) all the time that call for it that call for it. I must learn to use it.

  7. by the way, everyone should beware of so many restaurants today offering Caesar salad. it’s a very poor imitation made of dubious ingredients! including pasteurized or powdered eggs, “vegetable” oil, garlic powder, lemon juice concentrate, no anchovies or fish sauce, etc., and the dressing is rarely freshly made — it’s sitting in a big tub in the fridge for a long time. it tastes nothing like a real, freshly made Caesar salad

  8. Shelley Wilson

    Gary, hi,
    Here in Australia we use a lot of fish sauce. There is a Vietnamese or Thai restaurant on every main street.
    Thai curries are another great PHD food, lots of fat from coconut cream and go well with rice. The basics:
    Get a quality Thai curry paste in an Asian store- (I love Maesri brand) I suppose when you get the fish sauce. The small cans are great, with no nasty additives. Watch out they are hot though! Start out with a small amount of paste only. Add a can of coconut cream and stir till the oil separates a bit and looks coloured from the paste, add beef strips then cook and add veg and more coconut milk and cook then add some some fish sauce and lime. Eat with rice. There are lots of easy recipes on Austrialian websites, the Maesri products website and on the cans.

  9. Shelley Wilson

    Chicken and bacon are good in Caesar also, but Paul no! You can’t have Calamari in the same bowl with Parmesan or any cheese for that matter- you Americans are weird…

  10. thanks, Shelley! i will look for Thai curry paste as well as fish sauce. here in the small city of New Haven between New York and Boston, all of these things are available from several small shops!

    and yes, some Americans are weird about food, well let’s not say weird, let’s be kind and say limited through lack of exposure to other cultures (it’s a homo sapiens we vs. they thing, unfortunately), and would make a nasty face at the idea of going to any of our really terrific Asian restaurants here in New Haven or elsewhere, or eating liver, or even anything other than the usual American dinner triad of meat, starch, and peas/carrots (even greens are yucky to these people)!

    and i do like some heat, but just as long as it complements the food and i can still taste the food it’s added to. we have Mexicans living here now and the amount of heat they put on their food makes it impossible for me to taste anything but the heat! their tastebuds have clearly been modified over a lifetime so that anything without the amount of heat they add tastes like nothing. lol

    Chicken and bacon are good in Caesar, but then it’s not Caesar! ;o) I will look for the Australian recipe websites, thx!

  11. I accidentally made it with whole eggs! Opps. I’m not going to get sick am I? Are egg whites bad for you raw? I should have read the comments first. It was still really good though.

  12. Hi Murph,

    Egg whites are fine. You might need to supplement biotin if you did this regularly.

  13. Mmmm, fish sauce. The Thai brand called “Golden Boy” with the Happy Baby on the bottle is gluten free and has no added MSG. Not all fishes sauces are this way.

    Fermented Fish = Umami = Glutamate. Is MSG bad? I don’t know. Some say no, some say yes.

    I also use it in Italian style tomato sauces instead of anchovy paste to bring out that ‘certain something’ in the taste.

  14. Hi Paul, Congratulations on the new look and feel of the website along with the lovely picture ! I remember reading in one of your comments in a previous post that you regretted putting a specific percentage limit on safe starch consumption in your book. I was trying to find that specific comment but could not and hence ended up posting here so sorry about that :mrgreen:

    Are there any specific dangers that you are aware of to eating a low protein, moderate fat and high starch combination to rev up metabolism as suggested by Matt Stone in his diet recovery protocol? This would be only be for a short period like a month and would not involve endurance exercise.

    Thanks!

  15. Real Food Eater

    Hey Paul, this may be a little off topic, but how would you go about curing acne for a teenager? I am 15 and my diet is very clean; I eat a mix between Weston A. Price and Perfect Health Diet. I can be stressed out at times, but in general my stress level is low. I avoid touching my face and aggravating my skin. Despite all those things, I still have a bit of acne on my face (it is not a huge amount, but still enough to bother me). This seems a little unnatural considering that acne was non-prevalent in healthy traditional and hunter gatherer societies. What would you recommend to treat the acne?

    Thanks,

    Real Food Eater

    P.S: I do eat a lot of dairy, but only in the form of grass-fed homemade yogurt and grass-fed butter

  16. Hi Paul (love the pics of you and your lovely wife – you look glowing and healthy) Off topic but what the hey:

    I just tasted my first batch of Kimchi and it’s great! Bit of a tang, bit of salt, bit of heat – just right. I made three quarts. It’s just 7 days old and I expect it will get even better as it ages in the fridge. I don’t like cabbage so I used baby bok choy, Chinese radish, red little radish, carrot, garlic, sirachi sauce, salt and topped up with water. For weights I used plastic bags filled with salt water in case they leaked – not ideal to use plastic but I couldn’t think of how else to weigh the stuff down!! Thanks for the idea.

  17. Hi again Paul.Just an update on my theory that exercise is the cure for obesity.This stair stuff works and big time.I am eating to appetite and even more and people are starting to ask me what I do to get skinny.;)

    I have maxed out my 12 floor building which I run each day.Only once and takes me around 5 minutes.To up this easiness I am now experiencing I have started eating a meal and then running up.This has me feeling like death by stair 4 and I walk the rest huffing and puffing.I figure if I can do this after a meal run of 12 flights I will be in top shape.

    I feel that obesity and the reason some people never get skinny is just that there VO2 max stays high and hence they burn more fat for fuel during the day.Maybe an obesity cure would be to go in direction of finding out what causes people to get so out of shape.It is probably hormonal and “maybe” there is a way to block this hormonal message and stop this loss.

    • Thanks, Wolfstriked. Not sure immediately after a meal is the best time to workout. You might try getting a weighted vest or some such method of making the workout more intense, and doing it fasted.

      Great that you’re shedding weight!

      I think a lot of people who are obese are in ill health w lots of inflammation and their body is telling them to rest so the immune system has more resources.

  18. Thanks Paul,I agree its a bit harsh to workout right after eating but my thinking is that the worse one feels the better the results.I know its a bit hardcore and all but it seems to be working.

    It always makes me wonder why we get fat as we age and so I wonder if getting in top aerobic condition offsets this bad effect of aging.But is it aging or just a gradual laziness that slowly causes less and less fat to be burned?I specifically remember growing up and hence off my dirt bike,coinciding with my lifelong obesity.Once I gave up the bike due to thinking I was too old my belly just went out of control.I lived in a very hilly area and when you wanted to get somewhere you pedaled hard straight up the hills.Tip top shape and I could eat alot of food and stay slim.

  19. Ben Steigmann

    Beautiful.

  20. Hi Paul,
    I’m a big fan of PHD, bought the book and been following your recommendations for the past year. I used to be morbidly obese and have lost over 90lbs. I’m now down to my last 25lbs and been working religiously on correcting my omega ratio. I found that lowering my LA intake drastically alters my long-term appetite (probably due to the endocannabinoid system effects) for some reason.

    My question is, as long as I keep total LA intake under 4% of calories, and get enough seafood every week, will my tissues optimize the O6/O3 ratio? In other words, is tissue ratio the same as dietary ratio? I was surprised by a graph on pg. 68 of PHD that indicated Americans had 80% cellular long O6, which is clearly alot better than their dietary intake of roughly 20x O6 to O3. So I guess what Im asking is, given I keep O6 low enough, do I not have to worry about balancing my omega ratios? I understand if I go over 4% then LA suppresses tissues levels of EPA and DGLA.

    Sorry for the long-winded comment and thanks Paul!

    • Hi Daniel,

      Yes, our recommended dietary O6/O3 intakes are designed to optimize membrane ratios.

      The membranes do try to optimize themselves, so they don’t go to the extremes of dietary ratios, but membrane ratios do correlate with dietary ratios. Worse dietary ratios mean worse membrane ratios.

  21. My problem is how much salt I love to put with salad. I’m a salt-a-holic. That said this actually looks nice enough to try sans-salt… maybe… hmmm. It certainly looks fantastic which is saying something for lettuce.

  22. hi I made this tonight….but I didn’t have fish sauce and used whole grain mustard…i used some cream to make it wetter and bacon because we had no other meat….It was DELICIOUS! ha ha, i guess you can’t go wrong. Thanks!!

  23. Paul is it safe to eat egg yolks?

  24. Hi Paul,

    I think it would be okay to use anchovy paste in place of 1 tsp Thai fish sauce right?

    Also, Green Monster Smoothie is perfect match for your Caesar Salad.

    Green Monster Smoothie Ingredients:

    2 cups canned coconut milk, 2 cups washed spinach leaves, 2 cups kale with stems removed, 1 cup ice cubes, 1 cup fresh mango or pineapple (cubed), 2 frozen bananas, 1 cup water. Paleo recipes for smoothies are the easiest to follow. All you need to do is to put the coconut milk into a blender followed by all other ingredients. Blend until smooth and add other goodies to make the smoothie sweeter.

    Thanks for another great recipe 🙂

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