Grilled Caesar Salad

People are usually afraid to grill lettuce because it runs the risk of getting limp. But grilled romaine hearts are firm and compact enough that they can be lightly charred to perfection. Try your hand at grilling your salad for a change of pace this summer with this delicious recipe from America's Test Kitchen.

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1 tbsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 anchovy fillets, rinsed
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 (12-inch) baguette, cut into 5-inch long and 1/2-inch thick slices
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, peeled
3 romaine lettuce hearts, halved lengthwise

1. Combine lemon juice and minced garlic in a bowl and let stand for 10 minutes. Process mayonnaise, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, lemon-garlic mixture, vinegar, Worcestershire, mustard, anchovies, salt, and pepper in a blender for 30 seconds. With blender running, slowly add in 1/4 cup olive oil. 


2. If cooking on a charcoal grill, open the bottom vent completely. Light large chimney starter filled with charcoal briquettes (six quarts). When top coals are partially covered with ash, pour evenly over half of grill. Set cooking greate in place, cover, and open lid vent completely. Heat grill until hot, about 5 minutes. 


3. If using a gas grill, turn all burners on high, cover, and heat grill until hot (about 15 minutes). Leave all burners on high. 


4. For the salad, clean and oil cooking grate. Brush bread slices with oil and grill, uncovered, until browned (about one minute per side). Transfer to platter and rub with a garlic clove. Brush cut sides of romaine with reserved dressing; place half of romaine, cut side down, on grill. Grill, uncovered, until lightly charred (about one to two minutes). Move to platter with bread. Repeat.


5. Drizzle romaine with dressing and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Serve.