You may not know it yet, but in your hands you hold a super-delicious recipe for Caesar dressing. This little recipe will cement your reputation as a gifted cook. Make big jars of the stuff and give them away as holiday gifts. (Just keep them refrigerated.) You think I’m kidding, but that’s just because you haven’t tried the recipe yet.
In fact, the only thing better than this dressing is the homemade croutons that go with it. They’ll keep for a week sealed in an airtight container at room temperature.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 8-inch piece of Italian bread, cut or torn into ¾-inch cubes (about 3 cups)
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon anchovy paste, or 1 anchovy, chopped
- ¼ cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 large head romaine lettuce, cut into ½-inch ribbons (about 10 cups)
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Parmesan shavings (optional garnish)
Melt the butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bread cubes and sprinkle with garlic powder. Stir to coat the bread cubes with butter. Cook about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bread cubes are golden and toasted. Sprinkle with the parsley and ¼ teaspoon of the salt and toss to coat. Remove the skillet from the heat and set aside.
In a large bowl, mash the garlic, anchovy, and ¼ teaspoon of the salt with the back of a fork. Add the mayonnaise, Parmesan, and lemon juice and whisk to combine. Add the lettuce to a bowl and toss to coat with the dressing. Season with the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and the pepper and toss again.
Divide the salad among plates, top with the croutons, and serve. Garnish with Parmesan shavings, if desired.