When in Romaine…

Sign of the current times, a funny thing happened on the way to a grocery pick-up order…so on my last order nI wanted 2 packages of baby gem lettuces/4 small heads of assorted lettuces, a wonderful selection, but I forgot to uncheck the “substitute” box and so it stands to reason they would substitute, that’s reasonable, but by golly 6 heads of Romaine lettuce?  No problem I shared with my good friends.  On to another Caesar that I absolutely loved!

Beautiful crisp-tender croutons are the norm around here and always a bowl full done in minutes, but today I dove into this long earmarked recipe for a fancy change into an otherwise same old same old Caesar salad.  Well, hey there now Mike loves potatoes and Nigella has the guts to do something different…link below to the original recipe because I didn’t want to make one change, but managed a scaled-down recipe using my friend Janet’s happy chicken eggs, thanks, Janet.

Nigella suggests that it serves 6, but I would add more potatoes.  I scaled back the recipe considerably of course, but still used 1 huge baking potato, diced and pan-fried them instead of roasting which was easier for me to control.  I held off adding the garlic until the last few minutes so it wouldn’t burn and since I didn’t use the oven method I don’t know if the minced garlic would burn.

Nigella’s Caesar Salad from How to Eat slightly adapted

For the potatoes:
1 large boiling potato, peeled or unpeeled and diced
2 to 3 large garlic cloves, minced
About 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Coarse sea salt

For the salad:
2 eggs
Leaves from 4 to 6 heads baby romaine lettuce or 2 to 3 heads regular romaine
Pinch salt, plus more, if needed
Black peppercorn mill
a few drops of  Worcestershire sauce
1 lemon, juiced
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan


Preheat oven to 400º

Toss potatoes, garlic, and olive oil together. Empty them onto a baking pan, and then roast them for 45 minutes to 1 hour in the preheated oven. When they’re glistening brown, I lay them on some paper towels and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. You don’t want them to go on the salad when hot, so cool potatoes on some paper towels for about 10 minutes.

*Alternately you can pan fry, but only add the garlic the last few minutes.

Put some water on for the eggs, put a matchstick into the pot, and then, when boiling, lower in the eggs and boil for exactly 1 minute. Remove and set aside.

Tear the romaine leaves into edible sizes and toss with the remaining 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil to coat well but lightly. Sprinkle over the salt and several grinds of pepper and toss again. Shake over about 6 drops of Worcestershire sauce, drizzle over the lemon juice, break in the eggs, and toss to blend. Correct the seasoning. Toss with the cheese and then with the potato croutons at the very last minute, as you bring it to the table – no sooner, or the salad will wilt.

Nigella’s Caesar Salad from How to Eat