Grilled (Faux) Caesar Salad

Grilled (Faux) Caesar Salad

This is hardly a recipe, but it’s so good and such a staple around here that it’s impossible not to share it with you.

When I lived in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, I lived around the corner from the Wythe Hotel. They had a fabulous restaurant there called Reynards, which served a Grilled Caesar Salad with Poached Egg that I always swore I’d resisting ordering in favor of variety, but never could. It really was spectacular.

This is a less elaborate, lighter version of this salad…. or at the very least was heavily inspired by it. If you haven’t grilled greens, you really ought to. Romaine, Chard, Dandelion – any large leafy green will get a unique treatment from just a few seconds on a grill.

If you don’t have a grill, use a grill pan or even cast iron pan for that matter. It’s that nice char you’re after.

Grilled Faux-Caesar Salad

Serves: 4-6


3 hearts of romaine, halved with core intact

2 cups cherry or roma tomatoes, halved

¼ cup thinly sliced white or red onion

Olive oil, salt, and pepper, for grilling


1 small garlic cloves, minced

½  teaspoon anchovy paste (found near the canned tuna in the supermarket)

½ fresh lemon, squeezed

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard 

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

½ cup good mayonnaise

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Make the dressing:

In a medium bowl, whisk together all ingredients but the mayonnaise, until smooth.  Add in the mayonnaise and continue to whisk until thick and combined.

Taste, and if desired, add a bit of salt.  I often find ¼ teaspoon Is all that is needed if any.

Set aside.  

Pre-heat your grill, or pre-heat your grill/cast iron pan.

Rub the romaine hearts with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  

Place the romaine hearts cut side down for 3-4 minutes, or until nicely charred.  Turn as needed to cook evenly.

Remove to a large platter, cut side up, and garnish with the tomato and onion.

Spoon the dressing over and finish with more cracked pepper.  


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