There is a plethora of origin stories for Caesar salad. The most common is probably the one that suggests it originated in Mexico, in the early 1920’s, made by the Cardini brothers. Mexico…Caesar salad…’Why not try using a more Mexican flavor profile?’, The Goddess wondered…it turns out it was a pretty tasty thought to have! I stuck with the basic yogurt/mayonnaise combination. But, you can feel free to use all mayonnaise. I don’t find all-yogurt dressings to have as rich and satisfying a mouth feel that I want. But, if it works for you, then, “All Hail, Caesar, all-yogurt dressing”! This is so, so, so much better made at least 12 hours ahead. I use Spanish anchovies, if you can find them. I feel the flavor of Spanish or Portuguese anchovies is far superior to the ones from Morocco. But, use what you can find, but do use them. I pull the fillets out of the bottle and simply mash them with a fork. I mix up the dressing in a bowl, but you may toss everything in the blender and whirl it up. The advantage (or disadvantage) with the blender is that you will have infinitesimally tiny bits of cilantro. I like small bits, but I rather like to see the bits, a bit!!
For a Spanish Caesar Salad, I toss the dressing with orange sections, red onion, cherry tomatoes. Then I make the salad with romaine lettuce, to which I add roasted pepper strips, black olives, scallions and use tortilla strips, instead of croutons. I grate Manchego cheese over the salad. Different, but decidedly delicious. However, this dressing is more than just a salad dressing. It’s a great dip with chicken fingers, calamari, shrimp and it’s really quite lovely drizzled over steak or grilled chicken or fish.
Creamy Caesar Dressing with South-of-the-Border Flavors
- 3/4 cup good-quality mayonnaise (I used “light”, not fat-free)
- 3/4 cup light sour cream or plain Greek-style yogurt
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 5-6 teaspoons fresh lime juice (more or less to taste)
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 3 cloves garlic, grated
- 2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked sweet paprika
- Pinch ground cumin
- 4-5 anchovy fillets, mashed
- 2-3 tablespoons very, very finely minced fresh cilantro
- 2 tablespoons excellent flavored olive oil
Place all the ingredients in a bowl or blender container. Stir/whirl until completely combined. Pour into a container; chill and store in the refrigerator. Will keep in the fridge for at least 6-7 days.
Creamy Caesar Dressing with South-of-the-Border Flavors Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2018. All rights reserved.