Caesar salad is one of the most popular of salads, invented in the early 1900s by Caesar Cardini, an Italian who operated a restaurant out of Tijuana. The original recipe includes raw eggs, olive oil and garlic oil, which can be a bit much for those watching their weight. But since its invention, there have been several Caesar salad "knock offs" made, including low-fat versions. The eggs and oils are replaced with less fatty ingredients without compromising too much of the original taste.
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Rinse the romaine lettuce heads with cold water and remove the stump by cutting a few inches from the bottom or where the lettuce leaves start turning white. Separate the leaves into piles of three or four, and make a slit lengthwise down the middle, then make 2-inch vertical cuts along the length of the leaves. Store the cut pieces in a bowl in the refrigerator until they are ready to be used.
Mix all other ingredients in a bowl with a whisk until all are blended evenly and form a smooth dressing. Cover and store this in a fridge to cool for at least two hours. The dressing may be transferred to another container if desired.
Mix the lettuce and the dressing with a pair of tongs in a clean bowl until the lettuce is evenly coated. Add croutons and more fresh grated Parmigiano Reggiano if desired. Serves eight but can be doubled.